Senate debates

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Matters of Public Interest

Basslink

1:55 pm

Photo of Guy BarnettGuy Barnett (Tasmania, Liberal Party) Share this | Hansard source

Thank you, Senator Polley; that is absolutely right. Together with the Leader of the Opposition in Tasmania, Peter Gutwein, Jeremy Rockliff and the Liberal opposition in Tasmania want to make a difference. We have had discussions with Digital Tasmania. I held a forum on this topic some months ago, and Andrew Connor spoke then. His views are the same now as they were then—that is, we need a solution and we need it fast. There is $2 million of taxpayers’ money going down the tube for no benefit, all because the Treasurer, Michael Aird, and Premier Bartlett cannot do a deal with the current owners. It is not good enough. We need to send an unequivocal, very firm message to the Labor government in Tasmania that we deserve better. The people of Tasmania want us to stand up and say, ‘We want to make a difference for people in small business and those in rural and regional parts of Tasmania that we know will benefit so significantly from this link with the optic fibre cable.’ So let us stand up and make a difference.

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