Page 100 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 27 November 2012

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Mr Smyth proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly. In accordance with standing order 79, the Speaker has determined that the matter proposed by Ms Berry be submitted to the Assembly, namely:

The importance of the centenary to the ACT community.

MS BERRY (Ginninderra) (4.09): I welcome the opportunity to speak today on the matter of public importance. Next year’s centenary will be an opportunity to promote this fantastic city and surrounding region to the nation and the world, offering a huge range of economic benefits and opportunities for our city and our community. It is also an opportunity for us to come together like never before to share what is shaping up to be a fantastic year.

The program launched by the Chief Minister in early September is jam-packed with celebration, commemoration and amazing events. For the Canberra community there is something for everyone on every day of the year—from festivals, exhibitions, concerts, theatre, films and sport.

Thanks to the installation of lights at Manuka Oval, in early February we will host the first one-day international featuring our national cricket team playing the West Indies. A few days later the action swings to the Royal Canberra Golf Club, which will host the Australian women’s golf open featuring many of the world’s top 20 golfers. Australia and New Zealand will play the only scheduled rugby league test for 2013 in April here in Canberra, and Australia and New Zealand will again do battle in netball at the AIS later in 2013.

In arts and culture, Robyn Archer has brought together an amazing cultural program. It will be the biggest season ever seen at the Canberra Theatre, with performances being brought in from all over Australia for Collected Works: Australia 2013. Our March birthday will see the world premiere of a specially commissioned symphony by Andrew Schultz, inspired by Canberra’s history and the Canberra story.

The centenary team has been working closely with our national attractions to pull together a best ever program in our wonderful national cultural institutions, starting with Toulouse-Lautrec, which opens at the National Gallery next month. In our centenary year there will be special open days at the Australian War Memorial, the Australian Institute of Sport and Parliament House. I am looking forward to seeing the start of a new centenary loop bus service, which will link the city to the parliamentary precinct early next year. This service will, of course, be welcomed by visitors to Canberra, but it is the local community who will benefit most.

We have an Indigenous program which connects our local community with some of the best performers and artists from right across the nation. The centenary team is also working closely with young people in our schools, with our multicultural community and with our seniors to ensure that as many from our community as possible are fully engaged in the year. There will be world class arts, culture, sport and a second-to-none speakers program, but 2013 will be celebrated right down at the grassroots. More than 50 individual projects and activities will share in the $1 million allocated through the centenary community initiatives fund.

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