Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 13 Hansard (17 November) . .
distributed through charities such as Menslink, Red Cross, the Woden Community Service and others. This is one of the many aspects of community participation where we see the CSO working hard. I pay tribute to the CSO and to its outgoing director, Henry Laska.
MR DOSZPOT (Molonglo) (5.57): It gives me great pleasure to speak tonight in support of the important work that community councils do for the citizens of the ACT. Unlike those of us in this place, members of community councils get no pay for the work they do. The councils mostly meet at night after most of their members have already put in a full day's work. The research they do, they do in their own time and with their own resources. Yet we in this place, and even the bureaucrats, often rely on them for information, for comment and for consultation.
One only has to look at the very protracted discussions associated with the Canberra brickworks development to realise how important local community groups and councils are. The Yarralumla Residents Association, in cooperation with the Inner South Canberra Community Council, did a great deal of research and assessment of the various plans that the LDA put forward over several years to develop the brickworks and surrounding areas along with the LDA's own unworkable road solutions.
The residents were active, informed and engaged, and, surprise, surprise, just recently the LDA admitted defeat and agreed that the proposals put forward by the opposition, the YRA and hundreds of residents' individual submissions were all sensible and appropriate compromises and suggestions. The LDA finally agreed to that after years of putting the community through agony. Of course, the proof will be in the final development, and it will be only then that the residents will know if the government really did listen to them and that the government will deliver on its new commitment.
When I was a member for Brindabella I well remember a former ALP member for that area John Hargreaves regularly berating and abusing the Tuggeranong Community Council, I think mostly because they did not agree with what he was telling them. As an MLA for Molonglo, I am fortunate to have a number of community councils, residents association, trades associations and other local groups like Neighbourhood Watch who are proud of where they live and want to ensure that they get the very best facilities and outcomes for their suburbs. I meet with them regularly and they know that my door is always open to them.
Only last weekend I was at the Hackett shops. Hackett has a longstanding issue with the government over a very modest desire for public toilets and tables and chairs. I am determined that they will get these despite another Molonglo MLA, namely Minister Rattenbury, constantly suggesting each year that there is not any money. I point out that this is the same argument and the same excuse he has dished out to the Oaks Estate Progress Association, another great community council who are active in defending and promoting their suburb, which is in the electorate of Molonglo.
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