Territory Stories

Debates Day 3 - Thursday 21 October 1993



Debates Day 3 - Thursday 21 October 1993

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Parliamentary Record 21


Debates for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Thursday 21 October 1993 What about the railway? We have heard it said many times, and the Chief Minister has spoken about it on a number of occasions, that we have offered to provide $100m towards the railway project if and when it goes ahead. There can be no doubt about that. We are prepared to put our money where our mouths are and we have made that commitment even though every state in Australia has had a railway built totally from Commonwealth funding. Even to suggest that the Territory should contribute is ridiculous, but it is typical of the Labor members opposite. They are not interested in what is going on. They will even stoop, as the member for Millner did this morning, to blatantly trying to claim that no port development is occurring and that, somehow or other, this government is not doing all that it can towards the development of a railway between Darwin and Alice Springs. That was a pretty outrageous comment and one that can be easily shown to be utterly without truth. The member made a claim about Emertung Coatings Pty Ltd. He said Emertung gave up the factory because of freight costs. On the subject of freight costs, I recall that the member for Millner abused the government because it was subsidising a freight shipping service to Asia. All members will remember the press releases he issued and his comments on the radio. On the one hand, he is saying that the government could have put the money into doing something about freight costs whilst, on the other hand, where the government is providing a subsidy to try to assist with freight costs out of Darwin, he is the first to go publicly on the record and try to beat the government up for having the audacity to do something positive about development. The member claimed that no action has been initiated to ensure that the claims of subcontractors are being paid. That was a ridiculous thing for him to say. The fact is that over 100 subcontractors have been working on the project and, at present, 9 have outstanding claims for variations and prolongations. Mr Parish: Even Raphael Crowe does not agree with you. Mr MANZIE: I am quite happy that the member for Millner mentions Raphael Crowe because I have liaised very closely with the Confederation of Industry and Commerce regarding the problems of subcontractors and I intend to continue to do so. It will do the member for Millner no good to try to hang on to the coat-tails of the confederation. I want to comment on the claims for variations and prolongations. With the Supreme Court building, which has now been finalised, when claims had been discussed and the differences agreed on amicably between the parties, they received about 30% of what they had claimed originally. It is ridiculous to try to suggest that costs amounting to millions of dollars have still to be met. History has shown that, at the end of the day, these matters in relation to the Supreme Court were settled for about 30% of the actual amounts claimed. I have been advised also, in relation to those variations that have been claimed, that $2.8m has been paid to date in that regard. That processing of claims will continue in accordance with the contractual arrangements between the parties involved. To try even to suggest that there are contracts between the government and those people is patently dishonest. It is not true. Mr Parish: Show me where I said that?