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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 9 Hansard (20 August) . . Page.. 3449..


MR SMYTH (continuing):

In that context, it is entirely in order to ask this question in the context of the code of conduct.

MR SPEAKER: Thank you, Mr Smyth, and others, for those further insights. I have to clarify my ruling, as Mr Seselja asked. I made my decision on the basis that I am not in a position to interpret the implementation of the ministerial code of conduct. My governing of question time is constrained by the standing orders. I am constrained by standing order 114 in relation to questions to ministers. Your points, Mr Smyth, around interpretation of the ministerial code of conduct, without commenting on the merit of them, I cannot interpret. That is for you and the government to thrash out.

Mr Seselja: Just on that, then, Mr Speaker—

Government members interjecting—

Mr Seselja: No, there is contradiction here. The first questions on the ministerial code of conduct were ruled in order earlier in the week and, indeed, the first question today about the ministerial code of conduct was in order. Are you now ruling, Mr Speaker, that the questions are out of order and that the Chief Minister is not answerable for the ministerial code of conduct in question time?

MR SPEAKER: No, what I am ruling on, Mr Seselja, is that I believe Mr Smyth's question goes further into how the ministerial code of conduct is applied. I am not in a position to interpret that. That is the basis on which I am making my ruling.

Energy—solar

MS HUNTER: My question is to the Minister for Planning. Minister, yesterday in the chamber you were promoting the virtues of consultation with industry in regard to the introduction of energy efficient hot-water systems. So, minister, could you provide details of the consultation the government undertook with the ACT solar industry in regard to the changes made by ACTPLA that would require installation standards over and above the Australian standards?

MR BARR: I will obviously have to get the detail of that consultation from the Planning and Land Authority. It is not a piece of information I carry with me in question time. I will get back to the member.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Hunter, a supplementary question?

MS HUNTER: I look forward to that information, minister. Does ACTPLA merely place changes to the Australian standard required on the internet or are solar installers contacted by ACTPLA as changes occur?

MR BARR: The Planning and Land Authority is perhaps ahead of almost any other ACT government agency—in fact, almost any government agency. It has one of the most extensive community consultation frameworks. It works very closely with a number of industry partners. It works very closely with the community. In fact, the


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