Page 414 - Week 02 - Tuesday, 18 February 2020

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MR GENTLEMAN: I do not agree with Ms Lee’s claim that we have not acted. In fact, I have just laid out a course of legislative change that we have made, a course of financial resource input that we have made to Taskforce Nemesis, which the opposition just voted against in the last budget, for $1.6 million. We will continue to resource ACT Policing. They will continue to do the hard work on the ground and make those arrests.

MR HANSON: Minister, why has the number of bikie gangs tripled in the ACT in the past decade whilst in states that introduced anti-consorting laws, like South Australia, we have seen gang numbers plummet?

MR GENTLEMAN: The numbers speak for themselves. The numbers of motorcycle gang members have remained about the same, and 50 per cent of them are interned in the Alexander Maconochie Centre. The police are doing that.

ACT Policing—antisocial driving

MRS JONES: My question is to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services. I refer to a letter from the chair of the Weston Creek Community Council to you dated 31 January concerning antisocial driving. The chair of the WCCC states in his letter that Weston Creek and Molonglo residents are “underwhelmed” by the response to their reports. He adds:

The general theme is they come away feeling their complaint is unlikely to be acted on and they are unlikely to make another report.

Minister, to what extent have cuts to police numbers resulted in reports by Weston Creek and Molonglo residents of antisocial driving not being acted on?

MR GENTLEMAN: We have increased police numbers in the ACT and we continue to invest in ACT Policing to ensure that we can have more members on the ground: $34 million in the last budget to increase numbers across the ACT to address matters of growth in police operations and growth in the territory’s population. On this side of the chamber we will continue to invest in ACT Policing and we will see the rewards come to us.

MRS JONES: Minister, why has the government failed to respond to the frequently raised concerns by Weston Creek and Molonglo residents about hooning in their suburbs in the recent past?

MR GENTLEMAN: We have not failed to respond at all, in fact we have responded and police have undertaken operational matters in relation to hoon driving. We are using other opportunities to look at controlling bad behaviour on the roads by installing solar-powered CCTV to ensure that we can track criminal behaviour when it comes to either traffic operations or stolen vehicles.

MR HANSON: Minister, can you outline what specific measures you have taken in the Woden-Weston Creek areas to deal with the issue of hooning behaviour?

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