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Wednesday, 23 March 2011
Page: 2983

Mr GRAY (Special Minister of State and Special Minister of State for the Public Service and Integrity) (6:06 PM) —I move:

That, in accordance with the provisions of the Public Works Committee Act 1969, it is expedient to carry out the following proposed work which was referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works and on which the committee has duly reported to Parliament: Facilities for the introduction into service of Land 121 vehicles at RAAF Base Amberley and Damascus Barracks, Meeandah, Queensland and Gaza Ridge Barracks, Victoria.

The current military transport and logistics wheeled vehicle fleet has reached the end of its useful life. To support the future capacity needs of the Australian Defence Force, a new fleet of up to 7,500 vehicles will be acquired between the years 2011 and 2020. The new fleet will include self-contained loading systems allowing a single vehicle to perform several functions via interchangeable loading modules. This fleet will replace the current Land Rover 110, Unimog, Mack and S-Line vehicles with a mix of unprotected and protected vehicles. The protected vehicles will provide increased personnel protection to reduce vulnerability to improvised explosive devices.

The introduction of a new vehicle fleet will have three distinct facilities requirements including: the receipt, inspection, fit-out and dispatch of vehicles; the conversion training of military drivers to operate the new vehicles; and maintenance training to support the sustainability of the new fleet. This project will include the construction of training and administrative facilities at RAAF Base Amberley and the construction of administrative, parking and inspection facilities at gatehouse and entry at Damascus Barracks, Meeandah, Queensland. Training and administration facilities will also be constructed at Gaza Ridge Barracks, North Bandiana, Victoria. The estimated cost of the proposal is $50.291 million, plus GST, and includes all delivery costs: management and design fees; construction costs; furniture, fittings and equipment; contingencies; and an allowance for escalation.

In its report, the PWC has recommended that these works proceed. Subject to parliamentary approval, construction is scheduled to commence in mid-2011 and is expected to be completed by mid-2012. On behalf of the government, I would like to thank the committee for its support and I commend the motion to the House.

Question agreed to.