Page 5193 - Week 13 - Thursday, 29 November 2018

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Brindabella, who provide a great deal of support, guidance and advice, and make this job all that it is.

To all members, I wish you a very merry Christmas. It has been a long year, and I am sure that next year will be no different. For those who are travelling, please stay safe. We look forward to doing battle again in 2019.


MS FITZHARRIS (Yerrabi—Minister for Health and Wellbeing, Minister for Higher Education, Minister for Medical and Health Research, Minister for Transport and Minister for Vocational Education and Skills) (9.25): It is the last sitting day of the year and we have made it. There are mixed thoughts and reflections on everything we have achieved this year, the highs and the lows. The prospect of being able to spend lazy summer days with our families is agonisingly close.

It has been a huge year. In my office, we farewelled Charlotte to great things, Judy and Blair to spread their wings and Blair to pick up the important planning advisory role. We welcome Georgia, Tom and Bethel, fantastic additions to my team who have already well and truly stepped up into challenging roles. I cannot thank my team enough for sharing with me our huge portfolio load and working so well as a team. A special thank you to Vanessa for her leadership, her organisation and her work with an incredibly wide group of people. She is held in universal regard and we are lucky to have her here. Claire has gone above and beyond for me and the government, again working with the media on the very high interest in my portfolios this year. Her promotion is well deserved. And a final shout out to Hanna, who will graduate in two weeks: yay Hanna! She is also the human on the other end of the phone or email who handles a huge amount every day, the bouquets and the brickbats. It can be a very tough job on the end of the phone of the Minister for Transport and the minister for health.

We were a little sad to hand over city services, but we did shed quite a bit of our daily load. We miss much in this portfolio and thank the very awesome team at TCCS. They do so much to keep our city going. I thank the team, led by Jim Corrigan, and make a special note of the team on better suburbs and their continuing work on dog management.

A massive thank you to the team at Transport Canberra—Emma Thomas, Duncan Edghill and the team—for delivering the bus network every day and for overseeing the delivery of our largest ever infrastructure project. Light rail is so close, and it has been huge. A special shout out to the bus network planning team, especially to Judith Sturman, Ian McGlinn and Peter Steele.

Thanks to Kareena Arthy and Leanne Cover and their teams for their work in higher ed and CIT, that fantastic public institution.

Thank you to the staff at ACT Health and now Canberra Health Services. It has been a challenging and rewarding year where much has been achieved. People will look back on this year and the achievements of staff. They have been amazing. I cannot thank

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