Page 2034 - Week 07 - Wednesday, 15 May 2013

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MR BARR: Thank you, Madam Speaker. We are certainly very pleased to endorse the extra funding for Geoscience Australia, for the CSIRO, for the ANU, the 508 additional staff in the Australian Taxation Office, the additional funding for the ACCC. We certainly support a continuation of the national partnership on early childhood education, and we support the additional national partnership funding in relation to combating homelessness.

I am particularly pleased to be able to endorse the new university spending of $186 million to extend funding to research facilities, the $135 million for a further round of the future fellowships program, the $84.6 million for additional postgraduate and diploma places and the $346 million set aside for additional university places. All of those elements of the federal budget are, indeed, supported by the ACT government, and we look forward to working with the commonwealth government on the implementation of those important measures.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Treasurer, are there any threats to the ACT economy?

MADAM SPEAKER: Sorry, just bear with me for a second. Ms Porter, can you read me your first question, please?

Ms Porter: My very first one?

MADAM SPEAKER: Yes, the very first question, because I am just reflecting on it.

Ms Porter: Could the Treasurer outline how the federal budget will impact on the ACT economy?

MADAM SPEAKER: Did you say “economy” in the first place? You said “economy” in the first place.

Ms Porter: The ACT economy, yes.

MADAM SPEAKER: The question is in order, Dr Bourke. Mr Barr.

MR BARR: Yes, there are threats to the ACT economy and they come from a change of government. They come from a change of government. They come in the guise of Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey. They also come in the guise of those opposite who would seek to talk down the territory economy at any and every available opportunity, who seek to aid and abet their former leader in his attempted passage to another place in order to advance what they perceive to be the Liberal agenda for Australia, and that is an agenda that sends the Canberra economy into recession.

That is their agenda. The Liberal Party locally and nationally are the party of recession for Canberra. For those opposite to have been expressing any concern at all in relation to a small reduction in the commonwealth public service, the irony is that they are going to the next federal election talking about cutting between 12,000 and

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