Page 43 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

support of this place. We are all human. We will all make a mistake from time to time. The question is how we respond to that, what level of courage we have within ourselves to admit a mistake and to be able to get on and ensure good policy for the people of Canberra.

We have a process now on the substantive issue around note machines and the limits that should be allowed for a poker machine. We have a process, and I implore members of the Assembly to engage properly with that process. Let us get a unanimous answer so that we can have certainty for the club industry now and into the future. Let us ensure that we are protecting problem gamblers, and let us make the right decision. Let us strip the politics out of this, because it is too important to become a game of petty politics and personalities.

That is the challenge that is before the Liberal Party now. Are they serious legislators or are they just here to play games? This motion should not be supported, and Minister Burch should be able to continue her good work in so many areas of social policy for this government.

MR RATTENBURY (Molonglo) (12.23): It seems the key driver for today’s motion was the issue of the note acceptors and the limits on those for ACT poker machines. I think it is a well-known fact that I did not agree with the position that Minister Burch took on this policy. It was contrary to the Greens party policy, and, on that basis, I could not support it. I did convey that view to colleagues in the Labor Party. I put my view to the Chief Minister and the decision was changed.

I have also had a detailed conversation with Minister Burch about that. We have had a frank conversation about it. I accept that we have a different view on this, but we are now in a position where the decision was changed and, to my mind, that matter is over. That is how it is. We simply disagreed on policy. This discussion will no doubt come back because the area of poker machine reform is one that is complex. It is one where there is disagreement in this chamber.

I note that many of the issues that have arisen in this place that have come to a vote have resulted in a vote of 16-1 in this chamber, so I suspect that at the end of the day the Liberal Party will probably fall into line on this one as well, and I will probably find myself placed in the situation of 16-1 again. But I am quite happy to continue to have the discussion because I take at face value Minister Burch’s comments that she also wants to see this as part of a broader package. So we will have that policy discussion down the line.

The fact that we disagree on this issue is fine. It does not mean that I do not have confidence in Minister Burch and her ability to fulfil the role. Given that that was the key issue today, I think it is quite important that I put that on the table—that we did disagree but that the matter is now resolved. I consider that to simply be the case.

There are other matters that have been raised today. I note that Mr Hanson brought back onto the table the unfortunate tweet about the federal education minister,

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video