Page 1313 - Week 04 - Tuesday, 27 March 2012

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Members interjecting—

MR SPEAKER: Order, members! You are being rude to your own colleague. Mrs Dunne has the floor.

MRS DUNNE: Minister, what is the difference between the previously announced polytechnic and the recently announced University of Canberra Institute of Technology?

DR BOURKE: I thank the member for her question. As I understand it, the polytechnic proposal was a proposal entirely undertaken by the University of Canberra. The UCIT proposal was a collaboration between CIT and the University of Canberra.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Doszpot, a supplementary question.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, what courses will no longer be delivered through the Canberra Institute of Technology?

DR BOURKE: I thank the member for his question. There are no proposals not to deliver any courses through CIT.


MS PORTER: My question is to the Treasurer. Treasurer, can you outline how our high standard of living is supported by the ACT government’s continuing investment in high quality services such as health and education?

MR BARR: I thank Ms Porter for the question. The ACT is recognised for its high standard of living. We have strong labour force participation, low unemployment and a strong economy. We have a young, highly educated and productive population. Households in the territory have higher than average incomes compared with other jurisdictions.

Our higher than average household incomes are due to two factors. The first is our high labour participation rate of over 72 per cent. The second factor is our high average weekly earnings, about 15 per cent higher than the national average. We have lower than average numbers of households in financial distress, at around 9.6 per cent compared with the national average of around 16 per cent. Importantly, taxation as a proportion of gross state product is well below the national average.

A high standard of living is not just dependent on the economy, though. High quality services ensure that our people stay healthy and are happy in their life and work. The government has continued to invest in front-line services which are recognised for their high quality. We have done so in difficult times, when investment is most needed. These services allow all citizens to enjoy all the benefits that this great city has to offer. These investments have been targeted at meeting the needs of all citizens of the ACT.

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