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Jobs central to Gallagher's plans

Date

Peter Jean

Katy Gallagher with her dog Monty.

Katy Gallagher with her dog Monty. Photo: Melissa Adams

Chief Minister Katy Gallagher will take on the new ministerial portfolios of higher education and regional affairs as part of a drive to create jobs and gradually reduce the ACT's economic dependence on federal government spending.

Ms Gallagher is also considering merging the Chief Minister's and Treasury directorates into a new powerful central agency to drive her agenda of employment creation and improving health and education services.

A new five-member cabinet - including Greens MLA Shane Rattenbury - is expected to be appointed by the end of the week.

ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher at her home in Lyneham.

ACT Chief Minister Katy Gallagher at her home in Lyneham. Photo: Melissa Adams

Ms Gallagher confirmed on Sunday that she intended to stay on as health minister but would also work with the ACT's universities and local south-eastern NSW councils to create new opportunities for the Canberra region.

''If you look at the health catchment, we're a regional provider to 600,000 people,'' Ms Gallagher said.

''Why wouldn't we be looking at the regional services centre in a whole range of the other areas?''

Ms Gallagher said the combined purchasing power of the ACT government could be used to get better value for ratepayers in the delivery of a range of services.

''There's endless opportunities around the administration-side of the economy.

''We've got all of the south-east councils providing legal services and waste services, road services. If you thought it through, used your buying power and Canberra participates as part of south-east NSW, you could actually I think look at opportunities there.''

Ms Gallagher wanted Canberra to change ''from being just a Commonwealth town whose economic future rests heavily on what the federal government of the day is deciding at the point in time''.

She was already working closely with universities on projects such as the construction of the University of Canberra Hospital and it made sense for her to take responsibility for helping to increase the local tertiary sector and CIT.

Ms Gallagher also wanted to make changes to the way government was administered and this could involve the creation of a single central agency to drive her policy agenda across the bureaucracy.

''It would involve Chief Minister's and Treasury [directorates] coming together into one central agency providing single central policy advice to the administration,'' Ms Gallagher said.

''I think there have been times when you get a view from Treasury and a view from Chief Minister's that aren't the same and it does genuinely create difficulties when you're making decisions in a small government, in a small administration with a small number of ministers.''

Ms Gallagher would also explore options for senior public service executives to move around the service to help them gain better knowledge of how the government operated.

The territory's eight Labor and sole Greens MLA will on Tuesday use their combined numbers to confirm Ms Gallagher as Chief Minister when the eighth Legislative Assembly meets for the first time.

Despite not having the numbers to win, Opposition Leader Zed Seselja said he would be standing for the position.

''Without a doubt, I imagine I'll have eight votes and I'll fall one vote short,'' he said.

Mr Seselja did not believe the new Labor-Greens alliance would lead to a better government in the ACT.

''I think we've got a government that was looking relatively ordinary towards the end of its term,'' Mr Seselja said.

''I think that 11 years in, 15 years in, anything's possible.

''I suspect Canberrans are in for a pretty rough time when it comes to their government.''

18 comments

  • Katy I for one are going to be demanding better urban services,I had my family down from Sydney this weekend,they said they recently recieved a call from there Local Council ( Pittwater ), asking what they thought of there services, my mother stated it could be better.. After a weekend in Canberra she said it was fantastic compared to this ,they said they have never seen Canberra and its suburbs so run down..My 80 year old mother wanted to know what they were doing..I had no answer, but shame on you Katy.

    Commenter
    Martin Says
    Location
    Canberra
    Date and time
    November 05, 2012, 9:10AM
    • Katy has a "tell" when she is not sure of her position during a media interview. She says "Yair, look...." as she leads into a defensive comment.

      She did it twice in one short interview on the ACT 7.30 Report.

      Not looking forward to the next four years of Greens rule.

      Commenter
      Outraged of Palmerston
      Date and time
      November 05, 2012, 9:50AM
      • The same tired old Greens-bashing from Outraged of Palmerston. One Green may help secure better outcomes for Canberra but, with one Greens MLA, the next four years will hardly be "Greens rule". Typical hyperbole from the rabid right.

        Commenter
        Canberran
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        November 05, 2012, 11:00AM
      • Once again not a Right Winger, never voted Right and no desire to. More interested in Good Governance and that comes with a skillset beyond what we are about to receive.

        BTW, my statement is not "hyperbole" in that is meant to be taken literally. A 100 point policy document indicates that the ALP has given away ownership of its policymaking.

        Commenter
        Outraged of Palmerston
        Date and time
        November 05, 2012, 1:42PM
    • Taking Treasury off Andrew Barr. Yippee!!! I trust that Katy doesn't splurge millions on consultants, Indoor Stadiums, GWS brumbies and raiders etc.

      The money belongs to Canberran's. Also if she is so keen on regional stuff now will she still be taking a gaggle off to Washington?

      Commenter
      stoney
      Date and time
      November 05, 2012, 10:01AM
      • Agree Martin Says! Holes in roads everywhere, grass unmowen, the place is a disgrace. However, this didn't happen overnight. The neglect of our city has been a work in progress.

        Commenter
        Grange
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        November 05, 2012, 10:19AM
        • I absolutely agree with Grange, Kate and her ministers made a disgrace of our beautyful Canberra

          Commenter
          margo
          Date and time
          November 05, 2012, 11:20AM
        • This city across the board is in an appalling state, so run down, over grown and the costs of living here is going through the roof. Who only knows what it will be like after 15 years of one Govt.
          Well done CBR, happy with what you got in the way of Government...

          Commenter
          Shamed
          Location
          CBR
          Date and time
          November 05, 2012, 11:56AM
      • I believe Monty would go a better job than Kaite

        Commenter
        Mickyb
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        November 05, 2012, 10:39AM
        • All I can say is I'm so happy to be moving out of Canberra, good luck with this mob!

          Commenter
          Vaughany
          Location
          'Berra
          Date and time
          November 05, 2012, 10:45AM

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