Page 393 - Week 02 - Tuesday, 17 February 2015

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MADAM ASSISTANT SPEAKER: Stop the clock, please.

Mr Hanson: The minister was asked a specific question about when she advised the Chief Minister of this breach of law in her department. She stood up and turned it into a threat against the Canberra Liberals that she is going to be attacking family members. I would ask her to be specific to the question, which is: when did she advise the Chief Minister about this breach of law in her department? Did she, and when did she?

MADAM SPEAKER: On the point of order, as members know, it is my practice to write down the questions as we go. Most of the time that is not a particularly useful exercise, but from time to time it is. On this occasion Mr Doszpot asked Minister Burch when did she first alert the Chief Minister or the Deputy Chief Minister to this breach. So we will not have any backwards and forwards from members as to what the question is. It is quite clear what the question is. Minister Burch should be directly relevant to answering the question and I would ask her to be so.

MS BURCH: The breach involved my son; it was a personal matter.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, did you seek any professional or legal advice as to how to deal with your actual or perceived conflict of interest?


University of Canberra—urban renewal

DR BOURKE: My question is to the Chief Minister and Minister for Urban Renewal. Can the Chief Minister update the Assembly on the government’s close collaboration with the University of Canberra to support the university’s delivery of world-class higher education and to strengthen its presence in the wider community?

MR BARR: I thank Dr Bourke for a question of substance. This is a very exciting time for the University of Canberra. The university attracts enthusiastic and top-level students and leading researchers from all over the country and all over the world. We need to help the University of Canberra to offer them the accommodation services, facilities and the cultural and academic life that they expect.

Canberra is Australia’s knowledge capital. It is one of our city’s core strengths and a great competitive advantage for us. But we cannot just assume that this advantage is natural and perpetual. This is a highly competitive field, and any institution that is not offering top quality educational and career opportunities will be left behind.

The ACT government and the University of Canberra share a vision that will allow the university to reach its full potential by enhancing its reputation for providing high quality student experiences, being financially sustainable and making a positive contribution to the Canberra community. It is very clear to me that we can only renew the economic, social and cultural life of our city by having our premier higher education institutions as a central part of this renewal agenda.

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