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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 3 June 2015) . . Page.. 1916 ..

Dr Bourke’s motion calls on the government to focus on four key issues for Canberrans. I am pleased to report that these reflect the core priorities of the government and the 2015 budget. In terms of high quality health care and education, I am proud that the ACT government’s investment in these areas in this budget are both record amounts. In the coming year the government will fund $1.5 billion in health investment and $1.1 billion in investment in our education system. This will ensure that Canberrans continue to enjoy world-class health and education services.

In terms of the renewal of our suburbs and town centres, Dr Bourke has already explained in some detail how this budget will work on the ground in his electorate. I am delighted that he has shown how our investment will help revitalise the Belconnen area.

I said yesterday that this new role I have as Chief Minister and Treasurer means that I am effectively the mayor of Canberra as well as being responsible for major budgetary decisions. I am proud to be investing in municipal services—in roads, in playgrounds and in parks. Our city should look its best to reflect the pride that Canberra residents share in our city. This is important for our day-to-day enjoyment of our local areas. Parks and open spaces should be neat and tidy. The grass should be mowed regularly, main roads free of weeds and litter taken out of our lakes. This is a collective responsibility, government and community working together to build the sort of city we want for the future.

In terms of our renewal and growth, we will always have a focus on ensuring social inclusion and equality, that all of our residents are looked after no matter their background or their circumstance. This goes to the core of the values that those on this side of the chamber hold. Social inclusion is a bedrock of how we approach our community and our economy. We are standing behind those dealing with the scourge of domestic violence in our community, providing more support for those that are experiencing violence.

The budget contains more than $150 million for public housing renewal to provide modern homes for our tenants. It contains a big boost to counter and respond to domestic violence. It is about helping people get the right help at the right time for as long as they need it.

Turning to the economy, it is becoming stronger and more resilient as our deliberate efforts in partnership with the Canberra business community are bearing fruit. We have 25,000 businesses in the territory, local firms that are succeeding locally, nationally and on the international stage—local firms that are innovating and growing.

We are building on the already considerable strengths in key sectors of our economy. In areas like higher education, high-skilled service exports and technological innovation, we are encouraging investment into our economy, sourced locally, nationally and internationally.

Before turning to some of these business matters in detail, first and foremost the priority for the government is to support growth. An economy in which businesses,

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