Page 4965 - Week 13 - Thursday, 12 November 2009

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been resolved substantially to the satisfaction of the Hospice and Palliative Care Society. I believe in that initial list of issues raised there were nine issues raised by the hospice society. The government, in consultation with the Little Company of Mary, has responded in detail to each and every one of them to the extent that we believe the response deals with the concern absolutely and should leave the Hospice and Palliative Care Society with a degree of comfort in relation to the transfer. We are happy to continue that discussion and continue to make those commitments. (Time expired.)

National Multicultural Festival—cost

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the Minister for Multicultural Affairs. Minister, the Multicultural Festival ran for 10 days in 2009. Following a cost blow-out, the festival now will be slashed to only 2½ days in 2010. In addition, the cost for a stall—a six metre by three metre commercial stall—will increase to $2,500. Why has such a massive increase been imposed?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Doszpot for the question. Again, I am pleased that those on the other side are showing an interest, given that earlier in the week they considered it a light load and somewhat beyond their consideration.

Yes, the festival for this year will indeed be a shortened festival. It will run from 5 February to 7 February. There is a smaller budget, a budget that will be managed within budget and delivered within budget this year. The proposed program is still being finalised. The condensed program will still include signature events such as Carnival in the City, the Food and Dance Spectacular, the Greek Glendi and the Chinese New Year. Other programs—consideration may also be given to see how we include the bicentenary of Latin American independence and India in the City.

We have looked at evaluations of previous festivals. That has shown that people are keen to see the retention of those signature events, which we will do, over the three days as opposed to over the 10 days. It is around delivering a cross-cultural experience for all participants. Also part of this year’s festival is the slice-off of the fringe festival, which will go over to the Folk Festival.

Indeed, they have increased costs of the stalls—increased with indexation, I have been advised. The community group costs are still within—

Members interjecting—

MR SPEAKER: Order! The minister is giving information.

MS BURCH: The cost structures to the stalls, it is my understanding, for community groups are quite different from those of the commercial operators.

Mr Seselja: What about the commercials? Why are they so high?

Mr Barr: You don’t think they should pay—

Mr Seselja interjecting—

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