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Wednesday, 3 September 2014
Page: 6391


Senator BRANDIS (QueenslandDeputy Leader of the Government in the Senate, Vice-President of the Executive Council, Minister for Arts and Attorney-General) (16:59): I would not ordinarily speak, but I thought I ought to put on the record two observations arising from what Senator Singh has said.

First of all, although an economy was found from the AFP budget in relation to the provision of AFP services to Hobart Airport, that economy was nothing compared to the vast sums—the many millions of dollars—taken from the AFP's budget as a result of the degradation of the AFP's capacity during the six years of the Labor government. I told the Senate during question time about how the intelligence agencies' capacity had been degraded by 37 per cent over the course of the Labor government. That included the capacity of the Australian Federal Police. Secondly, I acquaint the Senate with the fact that the AFP have advised that the policing services at Hobart airport will be perfectly adequately and sufficiently performed by the Tasmanian state police, a police force of which I know, Mr President, you were once a most distinguished officer.

Question agreed to.