Page 2938 - Week 10 - Tuesday, 13 August 2013

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Indicative costs associated with various elements of the project, used in preliminary costing exercises have been made available through Project Updates and other material released by the Government, and published on the … website. Publication of a detailed project budget at this time is neither practical nor prudent given the commercial sensitivity associated with the design, procurement and delivery of the project.

The Chief Minister says we should be collaborative, we all should participate and we should have transparency, except where it does not suit the government.

Again, as we made the point this morning, we are being asked to sign up for a project for which we do not know the details. We are being asked to give the government the go-ahead. It is only a small amount of money for capital metro in this year’s budget, but that money will grow and they will constantly come back and say, “You were there at the start. You could have stopped it, but you did not.” But we do not know what it is that we are being told.

There are some other ones that I will go to. The response to detailing how the capital metro project will be funded is:

Agreed in principle.

But we know that the minister said the other day, “If we do not get the money from Infrastructure Australia we will do it ourselves.” The response to recommendation 102, releasing all details concerning the running cost and the amount expected to be collected through the fare box, the degree of supplementation to be paid and the exposure of the territory, is:

Not agreed.

Detailed analysis of the matters raised in this recommendation is a key element of the project.

There you go. It is a key element; so the committee got that bit right. Then:

The commercially sensitive nature of them, particularly in terms of engagement with the private sector in the delivery of the project, would be such that they could not be published at least until the conclusion of any financial negotiations on the project.

There we are. The government is going to go away and negotiate with somebody else about the cost of this project, but the degree to which it will be supplemented will come back to this place. And we have a right to know what we are signing up to. I think we have a right to know what we are signing up to before the government signs up, and that is the problem with the approach of this government. “We are doing this come hell or high water. It does not matter how much it costs. The cost is not a problem for us because we think it is a good policy idea, and we are not going to tell you the detail.”

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