Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 10 Hansard (18 October) . . Page.. 3133..
MR STANHOPE (continuing):
measures in hand. There are certain investigations that officials will have to take in relation to existing contracts, et cetera, et cetera, but we have started the process of ensuring that the ACT government will, in future, not use battery cage eggs.
As I have indicated previously, I have undertaken to seek to have the issue of a uniform Australian position aimed at phasing out egg production put on the agenda of COAG. There will not be a COAG meeting—I do not think that that correspondence has been prepared yet—in the context of a federal election. At this stage, no COAG meeting is scheduled. I will certainly meet that undertaking. I will write to the Prime Minister. I will seek to have the issue considered by heads of government. I will also—and I must say, I will have to take some advice on where the department is up to in relation to this—seek, similarly, to have the issue discussed by primary industry ministers, as I undertook.
There are, Dr Foskey, in relation to many ministerial councils, only one meeting a year. I think it quite likely that the primary industry ministers council will probably only meet once in 2008. At this stage, that meeting has not been scheduled, but I will do everything in my power to ensure that the issue is placed on the agenda—if I can succeed with that—at the next meeting of primary industry ministers. That just gives some indication of time scales and time frames. Those undertakings I made will be met, but the time frame stretches well into next year. I have no intention at this stage of wielding a big stick and suggesting to Pace that I am not prepared to discuss or I am not prepared to consult. I am not going to wield a big stick and thump them into submission. I do not believe that we will achieve a reasonable outcome by my adopting that sort of attitude on any negotiations with Pace or the Australian Egg Corporation. I have entered those conversations in good faith, as have they. The conversations were constructive and cordial, and I intend to continue in that way.
MR SESELJA: My question is to the planning minister. Minister, on 3 October, on WIN News, when answering criticisms regarding lack of land release, you said:
We're looking to tackle housing affordability from a supply side to increase the number of blocks that are available.
In the same interview, as an example of tackling the supply side, you cited the proposed suburb of Casey. Minister, exactly how far has planning for Casey progressed and when can we expect to see Canberrans moving into the new suburb?
MR BARR: My understanding is that planning is very well progressed in terms of the suburb of Casey. In the next 12 to 18 months we are looking to see construction commence on dwellings in that area. There is, of course, a bit of work that needs to precede that, but as part of the government's approach to addressing housing affordability on the supply side we are proceeding with a number of land releases. I do not have the fine detail of that in front of me, but I am more than happy to provide to the shadow minister some further information on the schedule of releases.
The vast majority of this work sits in the portfolio of the Chief Minister, through the Land Development Agency. However, from the planning perspective, I did indicate in