Page 5796 - Week 14 - Wednesday, 7 December 2011

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The flood levy will take approximately $38 million out of the pockets of the ACT. The carbon tax will put three in five Canberra families out of pocket and one in five will receive no compensation. That means that one-fifth of Canberra families will be paying an additional $515 per year. The carbon tax will see ACT electricity bills increase by approximately $142 per year from 2012.

These are all additional costs that Canberra families must now face, but the ACT government has little concern for them. It is no wonder that Ms Burch is unconcerned by the cost increases when the leadership provided to her in the Labor Party believes that there is no problem. It is important to remember that when the Chief Minister was asked to discuss the options for people to tackle the rising costs of living, she said that they could “cancel Foxtel for a while”. Let them eat cake, Mr Speaker!

Mrs Dunne’s motion today calls on the government to take their head out of the sand and examine exactly how the childcare reforms will impact on Canberra families. The people of Canberra deserve to know exactly how much they will pay under these reforms. I commend Mrs Dunne for taking up the fight on behalf of all of those families paying for childcare in the ACT.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (12.05): The Canberra Liberals will not be supporting the amendment put forward by Minister Burch, and I am surprised that the Greens would go down the path of accepting the rhetoric of the government.

The minister in paragraph (2)(b) of her amendment agrees to:

table, by the first sitting of the Assembly in 2012, a paper outlining its strategy to assist the childcare sector in the ACT to implement the national quality agenda.

That is interesting because essentially the minister has said, and told Ms Hunter, that she is not proposing to do anything at all because she has already tabled that, which she thinks sufficiently answers that part of the recommendation.

I would like to draw members’ attention to the glossy that the minister tabled. It is a 16-page document and if you have a quick look through it there is a title page that has no information on it, an end page that has no information on it, and between the title page and the end page there are four other pages which contain full-page glossy colour photos of cute kids and three other pages where there are glossy colour photos of cute kids which take up at least 50 per cent of the page. That leaves us with a five or six-page publication which does not actually address the issues brought forward in this motion today, does not address the issues of how this Labor government will help the implementation of the framework in the childcare sector.

The minister’s amendment also skates over the issues of how this government is going to help Canberra families address the rising cost of childcare. And the government is being aided and abetted in this by the Greens, which I think is unfortunate. But the message will come out today that again Joy Burch has skirted around the issue of the rising cost of childcare and the impacts that will have on Canberra families. And she is being aided and abetted and being allowed to do this by the Greens, who again are

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