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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 9 February 2016) . . Page.. 15 ..

on the weekend the Prime Minister acknowledged the importance of removing taxes on insurance and removing stamp duty by saying, “Taxes on transactions like sales of property obviously inhibit trade. They slow down economic activity. Everyone understands that.” Well, everyone except the shadow treasurer here in the ACT, it would seem.

In 2016 we will continue as a government to invest in the infrastructure that we need to keep Canberra such an amazing place to live, to work and to raise a family. Hospital upgrades to improve access in the emergency department and so you can have elective surgery when you need it; new schools in growing regions like Coombs in the Molonglo Valley and Taylor in north Gungahlin; a revitalised grand entrance to our city that will support the development of our CBD; investment in a modern transport network that makes the bus or light rail a genuine and easy alternative to driving, coupled with a roads program that caters to our growing community and a bike and path network that is the envy of other cities.

The rollout of the CBR free wi-fi network in all town centres, which will be completed by the middle of the year, is simply a community and economic necessity for a city of our size and ambition in this the second decade of the 21st century. We are rolling out an upgraded wi-fi network in all of our public schools so that our kids are the best connected in the country, and we are undertaking the biggest upgrade to Canberra’s ageing public housing in the history of self-government through the construction of almost 1,300 new houses. This is keeping our construction industry workers in jobs and providing our public housing tenants with efficient and modern residences. My government has a clear agenda and a plan to deliver it. We are getting on with the job of making Canberra even better.

I am pleased to welcome Ministers Fitzharris and Bourke to the cabinet. That their enthusiasm, their drive, their determination and fresh ideas started delivering for Canberrans from day one of their appointments is evident. I have specifically tasked Minister Fitzharris to oversee the establishment of our single transport agency, transport Canberra, to ensure our public transport, roads, parking, bike and footpath networks are integrated, reliable and convenient for users. That means that a single ticketing system, a central contact for information and coordinated timetabling are all part of our transport future.

Minister Fitzharris will also assist the health minister to deliver the government’s significant reform agenda to ensure that our municipal services deliver what residents need and that in the higher education, training and research portfolios we ensure that we play to our city’s strengths as a smart and innovative city.

I have asked Minister Bourke to oversee a range of important portfolio responsibilities. The children and young people portfolio and the disability portfolio have major projects at critical stages of implementation, and both are essential to ensure Canberra remains an inclusive and supportive community. He will also work alongside our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community to realise our collective vision of strong families.

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