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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 3 Hansard (9 April) . . Page.. 810..


not putting on apprentices, not employing staff, laying staff off. We have developers who are investing outside Canberra, small developers and large developers not bringing their business to this town, Canberra-based developers looking for opportunities elsewhere, and people that would want to come to Canberra to invest not doing so because it is such a difficult environment. And we have got consumers being left high and dry. Why? There is an enormous regulatory burden of green tape and red tape that is imposed on builders and developers that is restricting people from doing business here, because it is simply easier to do it elsewhere.

The fees, fines, charges and taxes—and there has been much debate in this place, and we will have some further debate in the afternoon about the commence and complete fees—have been discussed. We have had much discussion about lease variation. The burden on people trying to do business in this town, the Andrew Barr school inherited from his predecessor, Mr Quinlan, of squeezing till they bleed but not until they die, is alive and well here in the ACT, particularly applicable to this industry.

We know that we have some rogue builders, unfortunately. In every basket of apples there will be a few rotten ones, and we want to make sure that every action is taken to make sure that that is dealt with. Equally, industrial relations is a complex issue, and we need to make sure that we deal with that also.

Ms Berry, in her contribution, needs to realise that there is a broader debate going on here in the industry, and she is not simply a spokesperson for the union. I understand that that is her base, that is where she is going to get her support perhaps, but she wants to realise that if she is going to contend to be the next minister—and I am not sure where that debate is at the moment—she will need to demonstrate in this place that she is simply more than a spokesperson and mouthpiece for the union. She is an MLA, not a unionist anymore, and that is an important distinction that she needs to bring into this place.

This is a government that has got land supply tragically wrong over the last decade or more. There are other issues such as the government agencies and their role—for example, the role of the LDA. Many people will question whether the LDA should be doing as much of the development in this town as they currently are and what effect that is having on business opportunities in Canberra. Of course there is the planning system itself. As I referred to before, yesterday's legislation is a clear example that that is a planning system that is simply not working.

It is important that we distinguish between the glossy plans this government put forward and the reality when it hits the sector, because the reality is that despite the busy work of this government in trying to create the illusion that there is much going on, that they are taking action, the reality is that when you speak to people on the ground they are not happy, the system is not working and it needs a full and comprehensive apolitical review. And that is what we are calling for. That is entirely reasonable, and that would help. I am disappointed that those opposite will not be supporting this motion today. (Time expired.)

MR COE (Ginninderra) (11.03), in reply: To wrap up this debate, the opposition is extremely disappointed that the Labor-Greens government are not seeing this board of


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