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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 3 Hansard (10 March) . . Page.. 841..


Thursday, 10 March 2005

MR SPEAKER (Mr Berry) took the chair at 10.30 am and asked members to stand in silence and pray or reflect on their responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Unit Titles Amendment Bill 2005

Mr Corbell, pursuant to notice, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo-Minister for Health and Minister for Planning) (10.32): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

Mr Speaker, today I am introducing amendments to the Unit Titles Act 2001. The essence of these amendments is to reinstate the powers of the Supreme Court to make decisions in relation to alterations and cancellations of units plans.

The Unit Titles Act 1970 gave the Supreme Court the power to impose conditions and give directions to be complied with before making a final order for the cancellation of a units plan. In addition, the court was empowered to give directions to be complied with after the cancellation of the units plan.

The Unit Titles Act 2001 does not include any equivalent provisions. The act provides for administrative cancellation of units plans. However, the ACT Planning and Land Authority is not able to make decisions that affect the rights and interests of the individual unit owners.

The Magistrates Court does have some powers in relation to the rights and interests of the individual unit owners. However, the wide discretions previously available to the Supreme Court in the making of a cancellation order are not available to the Planning and Land Authority or the Magistrates Court.

Mr Speaker, any matter where property rights and interests are affected needs to be dealt with by a superior court that has the power to make appropriate orders to dispose of all matters. The legislation being tabled today addresses the powers of the Supreme Court to make orders in relation to the alteration or cancellation of a units plan and the power to deal with the dissolution of owners corporations. This bill provides the Supreme Court with powers similar to those previously contained in the Unit Titles Act 1970. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Seselja ) adjourned to the next sitting.


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