Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 08 Hansard (Tuesday, 9 August 2016) . . Page.. 2459 ..
words like “mangle” and “interfere” in talking about the CIT and CIT’s contribution to the ACT VET sector.
The CIT has made an extraordinary contribution over a long period of time, meeting many students’ needs. Many students are highly satisfied with their experience at CIT and go on to contribute to our economy, get jobs, and build businesses in this city. Its reputation is longstanding and will only improve. I note that CIT increased its collaboration over the course of the last couple of years, recently joining the Canberra Innovation Network and being invited by the Chief Minister to join the Vice-Chancellors Forum, which it is now a member of, collaborating with all our higher educational institutions.
Again, I encourage the opposition and Mr Doszpot to look up and see the forest, to understand more broadly the VET sector in this territory and also the significant contribution of CIT. I thank members on this side for their support for this aspect of the budget and I commend the CIT budget to the Assembly.
Proposed expenditure agreed to.
Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate—Schedule 1, Part 1.5
MR HANSON (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (12.15): I note at the outset that the Chief Minister’s directorate has become a bit of a behemoth. There is not much that is not in it. It has grown from 139 to an estimate of 2,431 next year. It is a bit reflective of what we have seen, I would say, from Mr Barr’s style of governing. It is certainly notable from his predecessor. I think that Ms Gallagher was more inclusive and ran a genuine cabinet process, but what we have seen under Mr Barr is a tightening of his control, the centralisation of government under his grip. There is now much in this directorate. With the expansion of the ministry, one would have expected the reverse to have occurred, as opposed to the centralisation as it is.
I spoke, under expenditure for the executive, about the direction for the city. I will not repeat much of what I have already said. I will just go to some of the touchstone issues that are being dealt with within this area.
One of those is city to the lake and the whole West Basin and what is going on there. I would put on the record that I think that this is a project that is causing significant concern. It appears to be less about enhancing our city and more about a cash grab to flog off as much land as you can as quickly as you can. If it is anything like the container village—Mr Barr’s dream of the pop-up container village—and if we see that being realised on a grand scale, we will all recoil in horror. That has not been a well thought out plan or process, and I think it is indicative of the sort of top-down control of this government in trying to create outcomes from above rather than allowing business in the community to genuinely come up with the innovative ideas the city needs.
We have made it very clear that if we form government in October we will put a pause on any plans for West Basin and we will have a collaborative inquiry—we will