Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 13 Hansard (Thursday, 2 November 2017) . . Page.. 4888 ..
MS BERRY (Ginninderra—Deputy Chief Minister, Minister for Education and Early Childhood Development, Minister for Housing and Suburban Development, Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Minister for Women and Minister for Sport and Recreation) (11.01): Well, my goodness; what a dummy spit this has become. Those opposite have moved perhaps the most serious motion that can be moved in this place. They have made some very serious allegations without any foundation whatsoever. It is an epic dummy spit, an irresponsible use of standing orders, and it reflects very poorly on each of them.
Let us go back to Wednesday. What happened then was disappointing but not surprising. It was the day when the capital city of Australia—the nation’s capital, our home, the place I have enormous pride in, the city that the Chief Minister, Andrew Barr, has enormous pride in—was not only recognised in Lonely Planet but was placed in the top three cities in the world to visit—the top three, Madam Speaker. While the rest of us on this side of the chamber were beside our Chief Minister, Andrew Barr, cheering our city on for this outstanding achievement, there was not a single peep of positivity from those opposite, with the exception, I believe, of Ms Lee. They just could not bear it. It was too much good news for the opposition to handle.
Again it is not surprising. There is a long list of achievements where the response from the Canberra Liberals has been just so glib: record tourism growth, a recession avoided—despite the efforts of federal Liberals—international flights, jobs growth throughout the economy, a fairer tax system and a balanced budget, export connections from Canberra to all over the world, and, the one which perhaps gets them the most, a rolling list of ACT government policies and programs which stick up for people who rely on their government to work for equality, inclusion and fairness.
What is the other constant here apart from the Liberals and their carping? It is the leadership of Andrew Barr. So it is particularly disappointing for me to be standing here today to debate such a flimsy, baseless, time-wasting motion against the Chief Minister. It is disappointing because we have so many other things of great importance that we could be debating that have real impacts on the lives of Canberra people.
The Chief Minister has literally spent years encouraging investment in and recognition of this city, long before it was fashionable to do so. The achievements that we have made now—the exceptional economic success of recent years—are a testament to his work. His leadership as minister and his response when shortcomings in the Land Development Agency were identified are also there for all to see. Most notably, on 29 September 2016 ACT Labor committed to the establishment of a new city renewal authority—a commitment now delivered.
What was the Liberals’ policy? If they were so offended by the activities of former officials of the LDA then what was their policy? Was it informed by Mr Coe’s own personal ties with the property industry; ties only disclosed many months after he began this line of attack? What an incredible double standard.