Page 516 - Week 02 - Wednesday, 15 February 2017

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These threatened moves take no notice of the cost-benefit analysis undertaken and take even less notice of the impact such moves will have on the employment stability for Canberrans working in these agencies. These forced relocations are extremely expensive for the taxpayer as relocation packages, to entice essential staff to move with the agency, are increasingly costly.

The Barr Labor government has continued to support the ACT public service and recognises the important role it plays not only in the function of government and the services across the territory but also the role it plays in maintaining a strong economy. The Turnbull government should look to the ACT for direction on valuing the public service and acknowledge that their reckless cuts hurt our local economy and, in return, hurt the Commonwealth budget.

The Barr government’s positive economic approach for Canberra can also be seen in my electorate of Yerrabi. As a local member, I am proud to see the government’s commitment to transformational infrastructure taking shape right across the electorate. With Gungahlin continuing to grow at a rapid pace, it is critically important that the local economy is strong and diverse to meet the demands of new development works. One of the most obvious infrastructure projects is, of course, the construction of stage 1 of light rail. We have heard the excitement from local businesses—they are all for the works to be completed. Stage 1 will boost the number of people using the Flemington Road corridor, and that is supporting confidence for small business along the corridor and creating over 3,000 jobs. It can also be seen in the Gungahlin town centre, where a number of local businesses continue to open and operate, resulting in more local jobs and the increased business confidence for the surrounding areas.

The government’s continued commitment to building a strong economy for the ACT demonstrates Labor’s positive vision for Canberra, and our ongoing support for the diversification of our local economy. I commend this motion to the Assembly.

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Minister for Planning and Land Management and Minister for Urban Renewal) (5.01): I am pleased today to speak in favour of Ms Cody’s motion and thank her for bringing the motion to the Assembly. I agree with the comments made by my colleagues today and wish to also state my support for our government’s achievements to date and future plans to pursue economic diversification and growth. This city is growing, we all know that. In order to maintain our status as one of the most livable cities in the world we need to ensure that we have a plan to invest in the required infrastructure and support jobs growth and broader, wider, economic and social development.

As our city continues to grow and develop it is vital that we continue to pursue the highest possible standards in our built environment. It is also vital that we pursue quality urban renewal outcomes so that our city can continue to grow while at the same time ensure that what we love about Canberra is preserved. As Minister for Planning and Land Management and Minister for Urban Renewal, I would like Canberra to be a city renowned not only for its livability but also its vibrant and distinctive civic lifestyle. Our city will be increasingly sustainable, compact and well

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