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Thursday, 24 June 2010
Page: 6663

Mr ALBANESE (Leader of the House) (6:10 PM) —Mr Deputy Speaker, on indulgence: I put on the record my regard for the member for Melbourne, noting his announcement today that he will not be recontesting the next election. I have known Lindsay Tanner literally since I was at school when I stayed at his place in Melbourne with him and his then partner Cindy Hogan. They looked after me for a couple of weeks when I was on an extended holiday in Melbourne whilst attending my first national Young Labor conference. Lindsay Tanner was also someone whom I had considerable involvement with over a long period in the labour movement. When I first came to Canberra I shared a flat with Lindsay Tanner and Alan Griffin. They were sort of like the odd couple, except they were two Oscars and no Felix in their flat in Queanbeyan and I very quickly made a decision to gain my own premises.

Lindsay Tanner has made an extraordinary contribution to the Australian Labor Party, to the labour movement and to the Labor government. He in opposition held a number of portfolios, some of which related directly to my electorate. As the shadow minister for transport, he visited residences in my electorate adversely affected by aircraft noise and was always prepared to listen to their concerns and, indeed, he made the first commitment to have Fort Street High School insulated from aircraft noise.

He has considerable policy ability. He has an ability also to engage across a broad spectrum of the business community right through to grassroots community based organisations. He is extremely well respected and I am sure that he will have a good career outside politics. His speech today reminds us of the sacrifices that we all make in terms of our families, and the fact that he is making the decision to spend more time with his two young children and also his two older children as well as his wife Andrea is a courageous one for him and I wish him well. I thank him for the mentoring that he gave to me as a new member of the parliament when I arrived in the House of Representatives. I look forward to continuing to enjoy his friendship for many years to come.