Retirement of the Clerk of the Legislative Assembly, Russell Grove, PSM

(12:30pm 20 October 2011, Parliament House Sydney)
Debate resumed from an earlier hour.

Ms CLOVER MOORE: I join with members of the House to pay tribute to Russell Grove. I express my appreciation for his contribution to the New South Wales Parliament and to me personally as an Independent member of Parliament. Russell Grove became Clerk of the Legislative Assembly in 1990, which coincided with my first term as the member for Bligh. I have sat here this morning listening to members' remarks about Russell. It has been a very moving occasion. Over the past 21 years in my time here we have seen changes in Government and in political leaders. We have seen Premiers Greiner, Fahey, Carr, Iemma, Rees, Keneally and O'Farrell. We have seen changes in the Speaker: Speakers Rozzoli, Murray, Aquilina, Torbay and Hancock. We have seen changes in the Leader of the House. When John Dowd was Leader of the House we sat for 30 hours. We started on Thursday and went through Friday.

Mr Chris Hartcher: We worked in those days.

Ms CLOVER MOORE: It was hell. Fortunately, those days are past. We have had Leaders of the House Paul Whelan, Carl Scully, John Aquilina—each of those leaders had his own style—and now Brad Hazzard. Some members have been here during all that time. In this Chamber—an intense, party-political, combative environment with heated passions, competition and sometimes camaraderie, and majority and minority governments—for me as an Independent the one thing that has been a constant has been the clerks, led by Russell Grove. They have always been calm, friendly, helpful and wise, and ready to advise. They ensure the effective running of the Parliament and, importantly, support us in our electorates. They play an incredibly important role in that regard.

I support the member for Canterbury when she talked about honourable service. That is what we all pay tribute to here today. Members have been told by the Leader of the House to keep their speeches brief. It has been a great honour for me to have Russell Grove and his wife, Frances, as my constituents. From their location in Springfield Avenue in the heart of Kings Cross they have given me feedback about the night-time activities in Central Plaza. We also have a common interest in the Pearl Beach area, so I know that although Russell is retiring I will still see Russell, Frances and Sarah-Jane. I wish you all the very best.