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Thursday, 18 March 2010
Page: 2229

Senator IAN MACDONALD (1:55 PM) —Senator Joyce has concluded his remarks and we do have a couple of minutes left before we need to vote on this very important piece of legislation. Part of the appropriations is the running of this particular establishment. I am livid that the government has spent money on rearranging the roadway around this Parliament House. I am also livid at the money they have spent on the fuehrer bunker in this building. And it distresses me that the water features around this building, which have now been turned off for a couple of years, remain in a most undignified state—they have canvas across them. Yet, where money for this building could be properly used—on addressing those issues and stopping the sacking, as I understand, of some 25 or more attendants in this building, meaning that those attendants remaining have to do twice the work—we have the government wasting money on not only rearranging the traffic around this building but then, having done it once, coming back with an expenditure of something like over a million dollars, I understand, to put in traffic calming around this building.

All this money is spent at the same time as this government is taking out the offices of senators and members—not ministers, I understand, but senators and members—those pot plants which were such an attractive feature of this building and which helped reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which the Labor Party used to be keen on but we do not seem to hear much about these days. I wish the government in its appropriations of money would spend money in this building appropriately and not on stupid things like rearranging the traffic flow around this building. I do hope the government will redress the expenditure allowing senators and members pot plants, that do help with greenhouse gas emissions and do make offices and the arrangements for our staff working in this building much more pleasant, rather than wasting money on a traffic system around this parliament which was not broken and did not need fixing.