Page 946 - Week 03 - Thursday, 28 February 2013

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MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Ms Gallagher, will you withdraw that statement, please?

MS GALLAGHER: I will withdraw that, Madam Deputy Speaker, but it is clear that the—

Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, Madam Deputy Speaker, could I ask you to reflect on the comments that were made by the Chief Minister and whether or not they reflect on the vote that was taken earlier today.

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: I do not think they did. I am not clear what you are actually referring to, Mrs Dunne, but I do not think there is any problem. Ms Gallagher has withdrawn her comment about Mr Hanson being a joke. That has already been withdrawn. I would ask Ms Gallagher to continue in that vein and not be tempted to get into that kind of discussion in future. Thank you very much.

MS GALLAGHER: Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker, and I certainly was not reflecting on a vote of the Assembly. I was referring to a speech that was made in the debate. And it is clear from that speech and indeed it is clear from the Speaker’s comments when she walked into this chamber and said, “So what, the Chief Minister, without a vision, could not get it done this morning,” that is the attitude that they bring to this chamber. The approach that the Liberal Party are going to take to the establishment of this select committee, without guidance from the Assembly about who should manage this select committee in the role of chair, is clear. I think it is very important that the Assembly provide that direction very early on.

It was not in the original motion but it clearly needs to be addressed now because I think the establishment of the committee provides an opportunity to provide a very valuable input into the discussions about regional development, and that is clearly not going to be the case. The Liberal Party will want to play politics with it. I imagine they will have fun not electing a chair. I think in this instance it is very important that the Assembly provides that guidance, and that is simply what this motion seeks to do.

MR HANSON (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (11.59): I share some of the concerns of Mrs Dunne about the process that is unfolding here where we can amend motions retrospectively. That is perhaps for a broader discussion on the standing orders. But it highlights the concerns that are clearly emerging with committees with two members of government and two members of the opposition. Mr Smyth has made some pretty pertinent points about that with the establishment of the estimates committee today. We are getting to a point where it would appear committees are starting to become unworkable as a result, and this is an issue that we will need to further consider in the Assembly.

With regard to Ms Gallagher’s motion to amend the establishment of the select committee, it became pretty obvious as the debate unfolded that her vision collapsed. What she put forward as a new and exciting vision from Katy Gallagher was exposed as something that Kate Carnell had done 15 years ago. The new and exciting opportunity here for regional development was something Labor had ignored for 12 years—in fact, they wrecked the good work that had been done.

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