Page 3780 - Week 09 - Tuesday, 24 August 2010

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MS HUNTER: Minister, is this consultation being advertised, for example, through schools? We know that it is being advertised on TAMS’s website and by media release, but is it being advertised in other places such as schools?

MR STANHOPE: I will have to take that question on notice. I will take a full brief on the nature of the consultation. I should say, however, that there is some information that I can provide in relation to consultation on programs such as the annual playground upgrade program. I think there is an issue for the government. There is an issue in relation to the timely delivery of capital works or infrastructure. We have—I have had this discussion with the department, focused particularly on playground upgrades and appropriate consultation in relation to infrastructure such as playgrounds—an annual playground upgrade program. There are now somewhere in the order of 500 playgrounds in the ACT. I think it is about 480. There are 480 playgrounds or thereabouts in the ACT. We have an annual upgrade program of well in excess of $1 million a year. We seek to prioritise playgrounds.

There is a point in relation to a consultation arrangement or process in relation to an upgrade program, a rolling program, such as the playground program, where we can invest, we can identify a priority list and we can consult. And then, where we have, say, six playgrounds, as we currently have, all at a certain age, all featuring a certain type and level of play equipment, we can consult separately in relation to each of them with individual communities, get similar responses and then, six months later, start the next year’s consultation. I have asked for some pragmatism to be brought to bear in relation to the nature of consultation on a rolling program such as the playground program. (Time expired.)

MS LE COUTEUR: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Le Couteur.

MS LE COUTEUR: Chief Minister, has TAMS been working with the Office for Children, Youth and Family Support and the community engagement unit to identify strategies and ways to engage children in this consultation or whatever consultation you have done?

MR STANHOPE: I cannot answer the question specifically. I am happy to take it on notice and provide a response through the Assembly in relation to the strategies used for engaging directly with young people in relation to services that are of direct relevance to them. I think the question is well asked and I am more than happy to find and provide information on the strategies that are currently pursued for engaging with younger people.

I do not say this lightly, though. I invite members to reflect on it in relation to government and the implications for government of, say, six separate consultations in six different parts of Canberra in relation to a single piece of infrastructure, namely, the form and makeup. We are spending, say, $50,000 on a playground upgrade and there is an issue for government in terms of efficiencies and capacity in relation to—and we saw this just recently—the consultation in relation to community upgrades at Chifley, Holt and Campbell.

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