Page 3450 - Week 09 - Thursday, 20 August 2009

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Planning and Land Authority engages with more individuals, I would imagine, in this community than nearly any other ACT government agency. It has a fine record and I am sure that I will be able, upon getting some further information from the Planning and Land Authority about this specific issue, to allay the concerns of the leader of the Greens party.

Multicultural affairs—Fringe Festival

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the minister for arts and relates to the changes made to the Fringe Festival. Minister, you have previously referred to decisions made by Minister Hargreaves as “not red hot” and “regrettable”, the most recent being in relation to changes made to the Fringe Festival. Minister, what role did you play in the changes to the Fringe Festival as minister for the arts and what consultations were completed with the arts community?

MR STANHOPE: I thank Mr Doszpot for his question and for his continuing deep interest in the arts. It is a pity, of course, that he does not have the same interest in his portfolio of education.

Mr Smyth: That’s snappy, isn’t it?

MR STANHOPE: It is. It is of passing interest that the opposition in the last five years have asked, I think, five questions on education in the Assembly.

In relation to the Fringe Festival—

Mr Seselja: You’re not going to mislead the Assembly again, are you?

MR STANHOPE: Gee, you’re a bit fragile today, Mr Seselja. They actually say that when bears or snakes come out of hibernation they are always a bit grumpy. Of course we have noticed the eight-week hibernation of the Leader of the Opposition. Where is that bear? Is he in bed? Eight weeks in bed! That is the longest sleep-in in the history of the Assembly, I think—eight full weeks of sleep-ins. And he has just come out of hibernation now. The old snake has just slithered out of hibernation and here we see, “Hiss, hiss, hiss.”

MR SPEAKER: Mr Stanhope, relevance.

MR STANHOPE: Welcome back to work, Mr Seselja. It is good to see you here after eight weeks.

Mr Smyth: It’s good to see you’re awake, Jon.

Mr Hanson: We certainly had a long lunch, Jon, didn’t we?

MR STANHOPE: What is the snappiness today, the six-cylinder car?

Opposition members interjecting—

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