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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 9 Hansard (26 September) . . Page.. 2692..


MR STANHOPE: Of course, public housing tenants will not even get the benefit of a warning such as that before their homes are invaded under this new Liberal Party policy. I will ask the Minister for Housing to give consideration to a public advertising campaign, outlining the Liberal Party's proposal in relation to public housing and assuring them that under no circumstances will my government be a party to such a disgraceful proposal that undermines the rule of law, breaches their human rights and puts at risk their very homes. This is a serious issue. The Liberal Party has announced part of its housing policy through this particular announcement, and we will absolutely oppose it. (Time expired.)

Albert Hall

MR MULCAHY: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, it has been over two months since you told the estimates committee that the government is certainly reconsidering the options potentially available in relation to the maintenance, restoration and future use of management of the Albert Hall. Can you provide an update on the government's intentions and plans for the future of the Albert Hall and tell the Assembly the nature of negotiations that have been entered into with the National Capital Authority or any other body?

MR STANHOPE: I thank Mr Mulcahy for the question. The ACT government at a number of levels has been giving and continues to give very serious consideration to the long-term management of the Albert Hall and to the maintenance of the Albert Hall. As members, I am sure, are aware, the Albert Hall has been privately operated for the past 11 years under a management agreement between Mr David McLachlan and the territory. The agreement requires that management pay an annual fee of $38,000 to undertake some minor repairs.

As I am sure members are also aware, a request for tender was developed as a result of the expiry of the last extension of the management arrangement between the territory and Mr McLachlan for the Albert Hall. That request for tender was developed to manage Albert Hall and, through the request, hopefully to find a proponent that was willing not only to manage but also to invest in repairs and maintenance at a significant level to deal with the longer term security of the facility and to ensure that its heritage significance was appropriate and respected.

During the tender process—and, once again, members are aware I think very much of the history—BMCA released draft amendment 53 to the national capital plan for the Albert Hall precinct. That particular release of that particular draft came in the middle of a tender process for the future management. As a result of that, significant community interest has been excited in relation to the future and the management of the Albert Hall.

The government is dealing with, in the first instance, the implications of DA 53. We are leading with the Friends of the Albert Hall, a group of Canberrans who essentially united as a result of their concerns around the implications of DA 53 and have put alternative positions or submissions to the government in relation to appropriate management structures and an appropriate future for the Albert Hall. The government is considering those; it is there. It is appropriate for me to acknowledge that the


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