Australia Day is a particularly special day for Canberrans, because our city is the single greatest symbol of our nationhood. It is the result of a young nation deciding to create a dedicated capital city from which decisions affecting the whole nation would be made. A place where elected representatives from around the country would come together to hold conversations and debates of national significance, and a place where laws to bind all Australians would be made.
We are the place where ideas are aired and differences are debated and resolved through trusted and proven institutions — the Federal Parliament, the High Court and a Public Service without equal in the world. We are a city owned by every Australian, a city where every Australian has an equal voice.
One year out from our centenary as a city, I am committed, as Chief Minister, to ensuring that Canberra remains the core of Australia’s ceremonial and parliamentary life, and the place to which Australians turn for leadership, ideas, and action on matters that affect us all.
I want all Australians to continue to take pride in the city that every one of them has helped build, a city that represents the best our nation can achieve, and that reflects our collective hopes and visions for an Australian future.
And as we prepare for our second century, as Chief Minister I am also focussed firmly on our local future, preparing for a stronger and more diverse economy and making the investments in key areas such as hospitals and schools so that Canberra remains the best of all places to live in Australia.