Page 1951 - Week 07 - Tuesday, 14 May 2013

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MR GENTLEMAN: Minister, what responses have you received from art experts on the program?

Mr Hanson: From the elite.

MS GALLAGHER: It is not the elite, Mr Hanson. This is not a class war. This is about—

Mrs Jones: Oh, so people can’t understand it if they’re normal?

MS GALLAGHER: No, I did not say that at all. I did not say that, so do not misrepresent what I have said. I think the issue here is that you can have—and those responses that we have had from the community are as valid as anybody’s, those people that have not liked it and those that have, and I have received representations on both sides of the Skywhale debate in the last week.

Also, in terms of understanding the artist’s original intention, understanding what she is trying to portray through her work, understanding how it builds on her international reputation and how she has rolled that into the centenary of Canberra commission, I think it does require feedback from people who understand her work and maybe have examined it in the past or people who understand sculptors and their work. So I think there will be a range of expert advice that will be provided. We have seen some of it come already. But overwhelmingly I think the Skywhale has done what we had asked of it in the sense that it is a unique commission by a Canberra girl done good—probably our most famous artist of the time, who has been commissioned to do a work about the city she grew up in and where she grew to love the arts and which has raised the issue of the centenary not just nationally but internationally. And I reject the view that that has only resulted in negative coverage. I simply do not agree with that.


MS BERRY: My question is to the Minister for Territory and Municipal Services. Minister, I recently received correspondence from constituents regarding the keeping of bees in backyards. Could the minister please advise the Assembly on the government’s policy relating to the keeping of bees in domestic and urban environments?

MR RATTENBURY: Thank you, Ms Berry, for the question. Currently there is no specific legislation for beekeeping in the ACT. The Apiaries Act was repealed in 1997 and replaced with provisions in the animal diseases regulation. I think it is important to observe, in the context of this question, that bees of course play a very important role as part of the food production process, with their pollinating of plants and in the production of honey and wax.

Legislation in relation to the keeping of bees was included in part IV of the animal diseases regulation 2006, and this is the only bee-specific legislation in the ACT. It is restricted to two offences only: firstly, the keeping of bees other than in a frame hive and, secondly, allowing bees to access honey other than in a frame hive. Perhaps I

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