Page 3512 - Week 08 - Thursday, 18 August 2011

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MS GALLAGHER: I would have to check my records. Not that I can recall, but I will ask my office to undertake a search to see if we have.

Bimberi Youth Justice Centre—Oakton report

MRS DUNNE: My question is to the minister for children and young people. I refer to the report on Bimberi by Oakton consultants, known as the Oakton report. When making a request last week to your office for a copy of the Oakton report your staff, in an email dated 12 August, advised, “The Oakton report is cabinet in confidence.” In question time on Tuesday this week you said:

I will not be intending to table it. It has informed the budget considerations for the 2010-11 budget.

But the next day, also in question time, you changed your tune, advising the Assembly that the report had been posted on the CSD website. You said:

I requested that to go on there today. So you can review both reports and make your own considerations.

Minister, on what basis was the report made cabinet-in-confidence in the first place?

MS BURCH: It was part of the 2010-11 budget process. That is what it was used for. Following questions from the Assembly here on Tuesday I reviewed the document on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning and I considered it was in the best interests to be very clear about the information that was in there and to put it on the public record.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mrs Dunne, a supplementary?

MRS DUNNE: Minister, why did it take constant requests and questioning from the opposition before you released this report? In releasing the report, did you comply with the cabinet handbook?

MS BURCH: I reviewed the document to see if it was suitable for publication, for public notice. I agreed that it was and that was supported by my colleagues.

MR SMYTH: A supplementary, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Minister, in failing to release the report for almost two years, what did the government have to hide and why could it not be more open and accountable to the Canberra community before yesterday?

MS BURCH: It is an interesting position. I get asked for something and damned if I do not release it. I get then damned for releasing it.

Mr Coe interjecting—

MR SPEAKER: Order, Mr Coe!

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