Page 3701 - Week 12 - Wednesday, 23 October 2013

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Mr Hanson: The question was quite specific. We are dealing with numbers here. You have been very specific about the 341. We have heard previously about what the operational capacity is in very defined numbers. At what point is the jail full? That is the question, in essence, and I would ask the minister to come directly to that answer.

MADAM SPEAKER: I think, in fairness to Mr Rattenbury, he was trying to outline the difficulties. My understanding is that it is not that 341 plus whatever gives you the number, because there are some exigencies at the margins. I think that is what Mr Rattenbury was getting at.

MR RATTENBURY: That is exactly where I was going to go, Madam Speaker.

Mr Hanson: Maybe I’ll put my questions to you in the future, Madam Speaker.

MADAM SPEAKER: Don’t be disorderly, Mr Hanson.

MR RATTENBURY: That is the observation I was trying to make: there is not a definitive number. It depends on the classifications, what sort of detainees we have. I cannot stand here and give a definitive number exactly as to how many detainees we can fit in the AMC at a given date. It depends on the composition of those detainee numbers.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Wall.

MR WALL: Minister, does the current funding and configuration allow for any further increases in the maximum capacity of the AMC from the current 366 beds?

MR RATTENBURY: I am going to take that one on notice, Mr Wall. I just want to check the exact answer to that as I know I am going to have it quoted back at me at some point in time. I am going to take some advice. I will come back to you at the end of question time on that one.

Schools—emergency plans

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the minister for education. Minister, today all schools in the Blue Mountains are closed due to the risk of bushfires. Given the confused messaging to schools that accompanied the fire in Mitchell last year, what emergency plans are in place for ACT schools if a similar situation were to occur here?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Doszpot for his question. I think some of the response can come from me but I also think that Mr Corbell can provide some response. Certainly, following Mitchell, all government agencies reviewed how we responded. I think that has been quite clear and I am sure that Simon Corbell spoke to the government’s response to the Mitchell fire. I am very clear that schools and also childcare centres as well are involved in this as private entities.

As a government school sector, we have very clear process and policy about at what point do we initiate certain procedures through a community emergency. There are clearly defined ember zones. I think that is the term that is referenced to that. I will leave it there. I am not quite sure where you are going to with this, but it might be that Mr Corbell and I will be responding to further questions.

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