ACT News


Sport, small businesses set to profit

The Canberra Liberals promised yesterday to spend $350,000 on netball courts in Canberra's south if elected this month, while the ACT Greens launched a $2.4 million plan to support Canberra's small business sector.

The Greens announced their policy package at Tilley's Devine Cafe in Lyneham while the Liberals were at Weston Creek's Arawang netball complex to announce their promise of an upgrade to the courts.

At Lyneham, Greens business spokeswoman Caroline Le Couteur said her party's policy would include a ''one-stop-shop'' for small business services.

''The ACT Greens will allocate $811,000 to continue the successful 'Brilliant Idea' micro-credit program for women and provide support for more programs across the Territory,'' Ms Le Couteur said.

''The ACT Greens have listened to business and commit to establishing a Business Services Office to become a single point of contact for business in its dealing with government.

''We commit $200,000 to further liaison with local small businesses on the need for a Small Business Commissioner and how to give meaningful powers to that position.


''Too often, local businesses are simply overlooked, or they are too small to engage in government procurement processes and we can change that.''

Ms Le Couteur said she believed there was more work to be done reforming the Territory's supermarket policy.

''The ACT Greens would allocate $200,000 to revise the Territory Plan and the supermarket competition policy to implement useful committee recommendations to improve the number and variety of supermarkets in the ACT,'' Ms Le Couteur said.

The party pledged $738,000 to establish their business services office and $200,000 for a cost-benefit analysis of the need for a small business commissioner.

There would also be $100,000 for a ''connect and collect'' website to improve construction and demolition waste recycling and $351,000 to government's procurement arm for a ''sustainable procurement change agent''.

The Greens have also promised to commit $200,000 to implement supermarket competition reforms

Meanwhile, Opposition Leader Zed Seselja and his sports spokesman, Steve Doszpot, were in Pearce announcing that if elected, they would spend $350,000 to convert six of the Arawang netball centre's grass courts to hard surfaces.

''Upgrading the Arawang netball facilities is an important initiative for Weston Creek, for both now and the future,'' Mr Seselja said.

''Local sports facilities have been neglected under the ACT Labor/Greens Government, and sporting groups have been left to raise their own funds for essential repairs and upgrades to meet demand.

''The Canberra Liberals believe involvement in local sport is key to building strong communities and will provide Arawang with a $350,000 grant to upgrade their courts if elected.

''This policy is part of our $3.5 million commitment to upgrading sports facilities across Canberra.''

Mr Doszpot said the Arawang Netball Association was important to the community.

''The association has been providing netball facilities and competitions for over 35 years and run winter competitions which nearly 1000 people compete in,'' he said.