Page 1745 - Week 05 - Thursday, 10 May 2018
We have not been able to hear from members of the public if that is what they truly think, because we have been unable to meet, to find a quorum to have the meeting, to find out if that is truly what Canberrans think.
I can go on. Mr Coe, in his speech back in February referring this matter to an inquiry, said:
… the ACT government have given up. They have given up trying to provide an affordable product for Canberrans.
We do not know that. Canberrans have not been able to have their say to tell us this.
I have been in many discussions with particularly the chair of this committee about extending the time frames. The chair will agree that this was not my preferred date. In order to make sure that we could actually get on with the business of doing the job that we have to do, I agreed to set a reporting date of the last sitting day in September. We were supposed to report today.
I note that the chair made it very clear that she felt that that was possibly an ambitious claim. We will never know. To continue to stand here and ask why this is happening, we really need to ask the Leader of the Opposition. Is he doing his job? One part of his job is to do the work that the committee has elected him to do and do the work that the community has elected him to do. Being a member of a committee is a very important role in the context of this Assembly. Mr Coe has been unable to perform his duties as a member of the committee. He has been unable to find time in his busy schedule to meet over the last five weeks.
I hope that Mr Coe can find time in his busy schedule to do his job and continue to meet with us moving forward. I hope that Mrs Dunne is correct and the committee is able to report prior to the last sitting day in September. It is very important that the people of Canberra are able to have their say, and it is very important that the members of this place do their job and do it thinking of the Canberrans who elected them here to do their job, to fulfil their duties, on committees, as a local member and, for those lucky enough, as a minister in this great place of ours.
I could continue, but it is really just upsetting and outraging, and it is too much to continue this discussion. I will agree to this motion. Unfortunately, I have to agree to this motion. I have given my word to the chair that I will agree to this motion. Believe it or not, my word means something to me. I am very proud to stand here and give my word and vote for this motion. But it is not without a heavy heart that I am doing it, and it is not without the disappointment I have in the members of the opposition on the public accounts committee in not being able to provide time in their busy lives to meet and continue the work of this committee.
MR STEEL (Murrumbidgee) (10.12): I am a little surprised to hear that the public accounts committee has not met recently at all. I want to ask some questions, to be answered, hopefully, before this debate concludes. My understanding is that on 13 April the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Coe, stood up in front of the media and said that 19 submissions had not been provided to the public accounts committee at that