Page 2700 - Week 08 - Tuesday, 23 June 2009

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That the Assembly takes note of the paper.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Services and facilities in outer suburbs

Discussion of matter of public importance

MADAM ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mrs Dunne): Mr Speaker has received letters from Ms Bresnan, Ms Burch, Mr Coe, Mr Doszpot, Mrs Dunne, Mr Hanson, Ms Hunter, Ms Le Couteur, Ms Porter, Mr Seselja and Mr Smyth proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly. In accordance with standing order 79, Mr Speaker has determined that the matter proposed by Mr Smyth be submitted to the Assembly, namely:

The provision of services and facilities in the outer suburbs.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (3.34): Madam Assistant Speaker, it is an important MPI that we discuss the nature of services, their provision and the facilities that are required in our outer suburbs. This is often a Civic-centric government, simply because there are issues in Civic as well. But we need to take into account where people live; we need to take into account how they move from where they live to where they work; and we need to account for what will happen when they are at home. So this MPI is important and I will obviously take a particular focus from the Tuggeranong point of view.

If you look at the history of Canberra, these areas developed rapidly, and in many cases, whether it be south Tuggeranong or west Belconnen, they have aged at an appropriate rate, which leaves them all at similar positions in regard to the status of the facilities that they have and the service that they have. There are complexities in matching urban development with the provision of services and facilities. There is often a mismatch that we should aim to avoid but, if we are unable to avoid, should certainly aim to ameliorate as quickly as we can.

Let us consider some of the issues that continue to exist in Tuggeranong, where people first moved into their homes in the early 1970s—1973 and 1974 in Kambah, which, of course, is nearly 40 years ago. We then need to look at some of the infrastructure that we are just completing now—for instance, Athllon Drive. I notice that the government put a press release out during the week saying how well they had done in finishing Athllon Drive. But the extension was a project first mooted in the 2000 budget as part of my five-year road program; so it is interesting to see that it finished some five years after it was meant to finish. What is important is the timely delivery of capital projects but then there is the back-up through the services and the facilities to make the capital projects worth while.

It is interesting to take the case of the Gungahlin Drive extension, which we heard about during estimates. Had both sides been duplicated at the same time, it would have saved the taxpayer of the ACT some $20 million and would have accorded the residents, particularly of outer Gungahlin, a much easier trip to work much more

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