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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 2 Hansard (4 March) . . Page.. 727..


Planning and Environment-Standing Committee

Report 27

MR HARGREAVES (11.43): I present the following report:

Planning and Environment-Standing Committee-Report 27-Inquiry into the building of a supermarket next to the Belconnen Markets, dated 27 February 2004, together with a copy of the extracts of the relevant minutes of proceedings.

I seek leave to move a motion authorising the report for publication.

Leave granted.

MR HARGREAVES: I move:

That the report be authorised for publication.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

MR HARGREAVES: Mr Speaker, I move:

That the report be noted.

Mr Speaker, the history of the inquiry got a bit chequered earlier on. The report refers to that and I do not propose to go into it any further.

This inquiry was referred to the committee following the presentation of a petition to the Legislative Assembly by Ms Dundas on 21 October 2003. The petitioners were requesting that the Assembly pass legislation allowing an Aldi supermarket to be built next to Belconnen markets. Petitioners also wished to draw to the attention of the Assembly that local people want access to cheaper groceries. I have to say I was a bit amazed to see that; I just want to see the next petition saying that people do not want access to cheaper groceries but that they want access to really dear ones. I just wonder why one would put that in a petition, but it was there.

This is the first time in the history of the ACT Legislative Assembly that a petition has been referred for inquiry to a standing committee. Only one jurisdiction in Australia has an automatic referral of petitions to the committees and that is Western Australia. Perhaps we need to have that considered by the admin and procedure committee-and I have a view on it-in the context of what we are looking at now.

Mr Speaker, the committee considered the impact of current land use policies, including the government's recent decision to allow for an Aldi supermarket to be built in the Kippax shopping centre in Holt, the business viability of surrounding businesses if an additional supermarket were to be established at the Belconnen fresh food markets, and the extent to which the community have access to cut-price groceries.

When the government is deciding what its response to the committee's recommendations will be, it should consider that any proposal for a new supermarket at the Belconnen


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