Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 11 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 September 2015) . . Page.. 3392 ..
I thank Mr Rattenbury for his contribution and his reminder, as Dr Bourke subsequently did, of Tony Abbott’s view of the NBN as a video entertainment network. I am reminded that it has only been, I think, a week or more since we have had a significant change in political discourse in this country. I welcome that; I think that is a great thing. But this motion today has not been moved because of that. This motion was moved because on this side of the chamber we understand how important our digital future is, which is why we have digital Canberra and the many programs that are rolling out through that. It is why on this side of the chamber we invest in nation-building or city-building infrastructure.
I had a forum on the NBN and the future of the NBN three weeks ago. I have spoken about it in this chamber and I moved a motion on it today. It has nothing to do with the events of last week. However, I welcome a change in political discourse in this country and a move away from three-word slogans. I certainly hope our local opposition can rise to the challenge of that, although I am not too reassured just yet.
I thank Minister Gentleman for his history lesson—it is a salient reminder of why we should always look back to history—and also for his Clarke and Dawe reminder. It was a great analogy, I think, of how this federal Liberal government is rolling out the NBN program.
I thank Minister Gentleman, Minister Burch and Dr Bourke for their contributions on what it actually means to not have connectivity in their electorates and what it means to families. However, I was really pleased to hear about so much of the great work that is happening in the education directorate. Having the best connected schools in the country is a real tribute to this minister and a real reflection of this government’s commitment to the future of Canberra.
I note Minister Burch’s comments about our students not just being users of technology but creators of content. That is the future. Our children, the next generation that sit in this chamber, will engage in issues and ideas and generating products. Sometimes, as we have seen in Canberra recently, teenagers from their own bedrooms are creating new products, new services and new ideas that they are taking to markets locally and nationally.
Again, I thank members for their support. I note the quality of the debate. I am pleased that the motion has support today in recognition of the essential nature of investment in infrastructure in our digital future through the NBN. I look forward to a response from the new communications minister. I know he has a real challenge ahead of him. I am glad that most members have been able to recognise what it means to enable our future. I look forward to having further discussions on this matter.
Motion agreed to.
Alexander Maconochie Centre—expansion
MR WALL (Brindabella) (12.00): I move:
That this Assembly: