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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 05 Hansard (Wednesday, 4 May 2016) . . Page.. 1482 ..


MR HANSON (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (12.07): I am not really sure that the amendment adds significant worth or value to the motion. It is a little unfortunate that Mr Hinder is having his work cleaned up by Ms Burch. He can reflect on that and whether the Labor Party needs to move amendments to their own motions to try to clean them up after I have spoken. I cannot imagine that Mr Hinder is overly excited about that.

But I just thought I would respond briefly because Ms Burch is talking about job cuts. She would know about that because Mr Barr recently cut her job and cut the job of one staffer in her office. When it comes to job cuts Ms Burch is an expert. She also would be an expert because she is the person that has cut jobs in ACT Policing. When she was the police minister Ms Burch cut $15 million of funding out of the ACT budget for ACT Policing. That has eventuated in over a dozen job cuts last financial year, with more to come.

We have the hypocrisy of someone standing up in this place talking about job cuts, when jobs have been cut in their own office, and that they have by their own actions cut jobs in one of their portfolio areas, ACT Policing, which we know is under enormous strain when dealing with issues like domestic violence, issues like ice, issues like the increasing amount of bikie activity that we have in this town and indeed the increase in size of our population. If you are going to stand up and move amendments to your own members’ motions and ramble on about jobs, it is worth reflecting on what you have done personally to look after jobs in the ACT. If you are the minister that has cut jobs, then I think that is, we could say, leading with your chin.

I do not know if that was a bit of a bid to try to reclaim her job if she is re-elected, try to stake a claim to be a minister if Labor were to be re-elected—and we can all shudder when it comes to that—but I remind members that when it comes to funding, when it comes to support of education, Ms Burch is the minister who presided over one of the most disgraceful things that we have seen in this town where a young autistic boy was locked in a cage. That is the school system that Ms Burch presided over. That is the school system Ms Burch administered: overcrowded schools, maintenance of schools which is not up to speed, and an autistic boy locked in a cage under Ms Burch’s watch. In police she cut funding that cost jobs and in her education portfolio she administered that portfolio to a point where autistic children were being locked in cages. And she has the audacity to stand up and provide a critique in this place.

On a substantive issue—and I think this is one that we need to be alive to—there is $65 million extra funding for education between this financial year and next financial year in the budget, and I welcome that. There is talk about Gonski funding. We certainly, as I said before in my speech, want to see increased funding for health and education and indeed anything else from the federal government. There is an increase in funding, from my reading of the papers, of $222 million between this year and next year in the budget. I welcome that. That is an increase of 12 per cent.

But when the Gonski funding model was introduced, because of the fact that Gonski funding is needs based and follows the need, that actually resulted in a $30 million


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