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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 12 Hansard (Tuesday, 26 October 2010) . . Page.. 5020 ..

We have high participation rates. I think we are the second highest in the country, with a participation rate of over 70 per cent, which is way above the national average. I think, again, the ACT government and the ACT Assembly did have a role to play in stabilising and supporting the economy. We took the decision to recover our budget in a slower fashion than those opposite would have done had they been in power. We have put increased investment into our own capital spend to increase the productive capacity of the economy to provide stability and to provide jobs—a $580 million spend last year. When the pressure came on the economy and industry looked to the government for support and assistance, we provided that support and assistance.

Opposition members interjecting—

MS GALLAGHER: Whilst I certainly will not stand here and take credit for all the good times in the economy, unlike all the responsibility those opposite would have me take when there is pressure or bad times, what I will say is that we had a role to play and we played it. (Time expired.)

MR SMYTH: A supplementary.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Treasurer, given the good state of the economy, why are Canberrans being subjected to declining services and higher costs under your government, as well as facing the prospects of higher taxation from your government when we get the tax review?

MS GALLAGHER: I disagree with the question entirely. I think what we have seen is the shadow treasurer stumbling around, trying to find some bad news to put on these economic results. He is the first one out; when the national accounts come out and they show a decline in one figure on page 103, he is the first to have a media release out.

Mr Seselja: On a point of order, the answer has to be directly relevant. Mr Smyth was asking why, given the state of the economy, the budget is in a shambles and we are facing higher taxes and services are not being delivered.

MS GALLAGHER: I am getting there, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, there is no point of order at this stage.

MS GALLAGHER: I am just drawing to the Assembly’s attention the excitement Mr Smyth feels when there is bad news and that, when the good news comes, he has to go somewhere else.

Mr Smyth: No, that is not true and you know it. I give credit where credit is due.

MS GALLAGHER: You do occasionally, Mr Smyth.

MR SPEAKER: Order! The question, Treasurer.

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