Page 603 - Week 02 - Thursday, 19 February 2015

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MR CORBELL: Thank you, Madam Speaker. The other point I would make to Canberrans is that the advice from ACT Policing and the Australian Crime Commission is unchanged. The level of organised criminal activity in the ACT is low. In the last 12 to 18 months ACT Policing have taken over 100 illegal firearms off the streets as a result of their dedicated task force activities. In addition, the level of gun crime in the ACT declined by 45 per cent over the past couple of years. So all indicators are of an increasingly safe community.


MRS JONES: My question is to the Minister for Economic Development. Minister, what advice did the directorates under your ministerial control working on facilitating the Aquis deal with the Brumbies provide to the Minister for Sport and Recreation prior to the deal being announced?

MR BARR: I will need to check that record, but it would be unlikely that there was any because the relationship with the Brumbies is my responsibility under the administrative orders and has been now for nearly nine years. It was when I was Deputy Chief Minister, under Katy Gallagher. Regarding the major sporting teams, the Brumbies, the Raiders, the Giants and the Capitals, who have performance agreements with the ACT government that involve, for example, playing at our venues—Canberra stadium and Manuka Oval—I am the responsible minister as Minister for Tourism and Events, along with the Territory Venues and Events group. Together with the other elements of their performance agreements, which include in some instances payroll tax concessions, the major sporting teams are my responsibility.

Let me be clear: the Minister for Sport and Recreation does not have portfolio responsibility for the performance agreements for the Raiders, Brumbies, Giants and Capitals. It is my responsibility as Minister for Economic Development and has been for years. In the instance of this particular sponsorship and, indeed, any other matter that relates to the operation of those elite teams with their performance agreements, I have ministerial responsibility.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mrs Jones.

MRS JONES: Minister, have you received any correspondence from Mr Rattenbury raising concerns about the Aquis sponsorship of the Brumbies? If so, what did he say?

MR BARR: No. I am aware of a tweet and I am aware, obviously, of subsequent media coverage. Minister Rattenbury and I have had a conversation in relation to the matter. As I said in my media commentary, we agree to disagree on this point. It is as simple as that.

It is perfectly legitimate for Minister Rattenbury to express the views he has expressed. I commend him for having the courage to put his views on the public record, because, frankly, that is quite a contrast with what we saw from the Leader of the Opposition earlier this morning in relation to a debate before this place.

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