Debates Day 1 - Tuesday 23 November 1999
Parliamentary Record 20
Debates for 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES - Tuesday 23 November 1999 projects in the history of this nation. Yet, they cant see it because they have a history of knocking this CLP government and they havent been able to drag themselves away from that attitude within 20 years. Thats why I wanted to call them the Tarago Party. But, quite frankly, the Tarago has 8 seats, they only have 7, and it is a whole lot more useful. This imagination that just isnt there is demonstrated in the Centralian Advocate dated 16 November: Rail work will not benefit tow n- Toyne. I quote from this particular article: We already know that the sleepers are going to be made in Tennant Creek and Katherine and there is not going to be much construction coming out of Alice Springs. He said: And as far as extra employment to build the line, Alice Springs does not need it. The non-Aboriginal employment in town is pretty well chockers right now, anyway, so I cant see a lot of jobs being taken up by Alice Springs people. You have to be joking, right? Is that the picture of vision for Alice Springs? Oh no, there arent enough people living in Alice Springs. Well, perhaps Alice Springs will grow as a result of this project. Perhaps the town, which he says has no future, will grow as a result of people coming to Alice Springs and working on the railway and when the 50% of those people who come to Alice Springs, or come to the Northern Territory, choose to continue living there, they will continue using and consuming products and will look for jobs in other sectors. I notice in this particular article on 16 November that we had a good photo of Murray McCluskeys hydroponic lettuce factory directly underneath it. Terrific photo! There are 3 people in there obviously happy to be employed, happy with their product, proud of the product. Into the far distance I see an increasingly large hydroponic lettuce factory growing on an annual basis. Now, let me think. Listening to what the member for Smart had to say, it costs that particular grower $2000 to ship a containers worth of lettuce from Alice Springs to Darwin. Oh, my God! Think about this. If it goes on a train, itll cost him $700. Perhaps itll be a chance for him to expand. Perhaps itll be a chance for this particular project to become an even more competitive project. We hear from the member for Stuart day in, day out, droning in this Chamber, about Aboriginal employment. The date project in the Simpson Desert, which is being run by the CLC, the Utopia project which is looking at citrus or grape production, will employ Aboriginal people. Now, shock, horror, as a result of this railway project, those particular projects will become even more competitive in their marketplace. Theyre already considered to be financially viable, yet, as a direct result of this particular project, they will become more viable and more competitive. But the member for Stuart comes in here and says: Oh, no, its going to have a negative impact on the town, but I really support the project. Well, hes having a bet either way, and I think thats a bizarre position to take. What we have heard today from the members opposite is knock, knock, knock. They thought the university was going to be a dreadful idea, and what weve found is that the university of the Northern Territory is one of the finest universities in this country. Cullen Bay was going to be a disaster. The sand bar out there was going to be a rape of nature, and yet it turns out that not only does it provide a lot of jobs, but people seem to be fairly happy living out there. I notice there are also many other people who go out there and enjoy the restaurants. Bayview Haven was going to be another disaster that the ALP predicted - hasnt proven to be so. The Woolner Road/City Valley area was going to be another place where they went knock, knock, knock, knock: Cant be done, cant do it. The Duck Pond, the first marina that was built in town here, they said: Oh no, you cant build one of those, this towns not ready for that. How many fishing fleets, prawn fleets, base themselves in that duck pond today? How many millions of dollars is that industry worth? Its here in Darwin because this government had the foresight to build the duck pond. These people knock by habit. They dont want to see the CLP achieve anything because they dont like it. They envy the CLPs success rate in these projects - and they have had many successes. This is the very essence of their particular political style in the Northern Territory. Envy is the base format upon which their political philosophy is derived, and, typical of people who are envious, rather than see other people succeed and applauding that, they would rather take it off everybody so nobody could have it. That is an absolutely dreadful way to base a vision for the future. Its a bloody disaster, and I can tell you, Mr Speaker, that the Northern Territory voting population has seen it time and time again. Vision for the future is what really matters in the Northern Territory. Vision - which has been provided by the Northern Territory government year in, year out. Vision that has provided us with a growth rate that is the envy of the world, 9.1% this year according to Access Economics. I congratulate the Northern Territory government on a visionary project and another light on the hill. Mr MANZIE (Asian Relations and Trade): Mr Speaker, I rise today to speak in support of the 4760
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