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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 8 Hansard (26 June) . . Page.. 2240..


MRS DUNNE (continuing):

Going to some of the other substantive issues: Ms Tucker talked about weed infestations. She raised issues relating to bush fires, one of which was fire clearing. One of the innovations is edge roads. In many cases I have been critical of the use of edge roads in developments, but here I am completely in support of it because the edge road is one way of creating a barrier that limits the possibility of weed infestation. You do not have people backing onto the reserve and throwing their grass clippings over the reserve or allowing their plantings to extend into the reserve. The edge road provides that barrier. It also provides a barrier for bush fire fighting. Generally speaking, fire issues will be probably adequately addressed by the edge road, particularly where land slopes away from the direction of prevailing winds in summertime.

In addition, the ministers talked about the connectivity between Red Hill and the very high-quality red gum/yellow box grassy woodland at Callum Brae, which is some 340 hectares-I can't remember the exact figure off the top of my head-compared to the 62 hectares in O'Malley.

So in summary, Mr Speaker, the members of the opposition oppose Ms Tucker's motion. We feel that it is not sufficiently thought out and that it is really a delaying tactic, an issue of political grandstanding and simply anti-development.

MS TUCKER (11.54), in reply: I will close the debate and respond to some of the points that have been made. First of all, I will respond to what was said by Mr Corbell.

Mr Corbell was offended that I suggested that it was cowardly to make the announcement just in the newspaper. He said that this was the normal process. But Mr Corbell is very well aware of the fact that this issue has been discussed and debated since well before the election. A lot of people have expressed views to the previous minister and to the current minister that there is high interest in what the government of the day has decided. This is the government that was claiming to be interested in respecting community input. There is no way anybody could say that not letting people know what a decision is and why it was made is respectful of input. So, I am sorry, I cannot accept his response at all. If he didn't want to put out a press release, at the very least Mr Corbell should have spoken to those groups who have put in so much work and time with various governments on this area of such high ecological importance.

We have been assured that the government has looked at the relevant issues for east O'Malley. Language such as "on balance" was used. Mr Wood, I think, and Mr Corbell, perhaps, put the position that we have a different understanding of what the process should be; that we don't really quite understand what is involved in the review of Action Plan No 10. I understood Mr Wood to say-and please correct me if I am wrong-that a review of east O'Malley has been done and that the result of that study led the government to the position it has taken. I would like that review to be tabled here today-now, if possible, but by close of business today would be great-because it would help us understand why members of the community, including those who obviously have had no part in it, feel so betrayed by the process that has occurred. Apparently that little discrete review of east O'Malley that you claim to have done is of such strength that it does not have to be included within the context of the broader review of Action Plan 10 which, as I recall, was a fairly seriously big election commitment by Labor.


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