Page 1297 - Week 04 - Wednesday, 25 March 2009

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Mr Speaker, in the third appropriation, the government, of course, was committed to projects that could proceed and that could provide a level of investment, activity and work within the territory. One of the issues that we are mindful of is the capacity, through roadside signage, to provide a service to the community in relation to notices and notifications across a spectrum of issues. We see them most particularly in relation to water levels within our dams—a number of signs that are currently hired by ActewAGL at some cost, to inform the community, as part of an overarching strategy to educate and inform us all about water consumption. Those signs have, from time to time, been used by TAMS or the government for road safety messaging.

Through that process, having regard to the cost inherent in the continued hiring, the government has proposed to give consideration to installing permanent signage on roads throughout the ACT. We are looking at the prospect of signs—I think the closest that I am aware of to Canberra are those at Batemans Bay. At one approach to Batemans Bay there are overhead road signs. There are two at Batemans Bay that inform the community of a range of issues of importance to that particular council of the New South Wales government in relation to road safety and other community-oriented notices such as water restrictions, fire alerts and warnings, road safety hazards and, most particularly, exhorting the community to drive safely, consistent with the road rules. We are investigating that possibility here. I am advised that, with respect to those signs—as I say, two of which are located at Batemans Bay, and there are dozens, perhaps 100 or more, throughout the city of Sydney—this is an initiative—

Mr Hanson: Exhorting the community not to drink and drive.

MR STANHOPE: Yes, drink and drive messages, speed messages, warnings in relation to double demerits. We are investigating that possibility. I understand that a single one of those signs costs in the order of $300,000. We are investigating the utility of the signs, their operation, their operational capacity, the implications of just having one or whether we would expand the network. At this stage consideration is being given, in the context of a first purchase, to the site that might best be utilised, to allow this individual sign to be utilised to its maximum potential. TAMS have given me preliminary advice that they believe the Tuggeranong Parkway, to the south of the intersection with Hindmarsh Drive, might be a site worthy of initial consideration.

MR SPEAKER: Mrs Dunne, a supplementary question?

MRS DUNNE: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Chief Minister, given that you have been unable to answer any of my original questions about the study—how much is devoted to the study, how long the study will take, when the study will be available and where the sign will be manufactured?—can you now answer how many jobs will be created in the ACT by the erection of this sign?

MR STANHOPE: I cannot possibly answer that, Mr Speaker, because the question obviously is a nonsense. The question actually goes to some of the other nonsense being spouted by the Liberal Party in relation to the ultimate purpose. It is about maintaining jobs; it is about maintaining existing jobs. It is not necessarily about

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