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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 5 Hansard (3 May) . .

Page.. 1417..


Successive phases of the affordable housing action plan, first initiated in 2007, have accelerated the land release program and introduced 98 initiatives aimed at improving housing affordability for all Canberrans. The ACT government has been a leader in taxation and planning reform, particularly in phasing out stamp duty and reducing property taxes on properties at the lower end of the market, and has established affordable housing targets for all greenfield developments. The current third phase of the plan continues to improve rental affordability, focusing on households in the lowest two income quintiles.

I have spoken at length about the importance of the ACT's social housing system, which effectively prevents housing stress for many lower income households. I have also stressed the need for a clear and consistent commonwealth response, particularly their policies on affordability and funding intentions for housing and homelessness services. From the recent national meeting of housing and homelessness ministers, it is clear that this view is held across the state and territory governments.

The submission I have tabled today notes that the ACT government has recently established a senior officials group to lead housing policy development from a whole-of-government perspective. It will build on the good work that has been done so far, and further focus our efforts on improving the supply of affordable rental accommodation.

The ACT government is committed to addressing issues of housing affordability and is eager to explore new and innovative approaches to tackle this challenge. Our submission also encourages the commonwealth to engage further with options around key policy levers such as negative gearing and capital gains tax discounts, although I note the Prime Minister has since ruled these out if the coalition is re-elected.

In advocating a national response, we know that the prospects of achieving effective reform are better through coordinated and collaborative action. I again welcome the prominence of this issue in the national conversation at present, and I assure the Assembly that the ACT government will continue to work where we can to respond to the challenge of housing affordability. I commend the ACT government's submission to the Assembly and I am pleased to have tabled it today.

Paper

Mr Gentleman presented the following paper:

Legislation Act, pursuant to section 64—Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment Act—Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment Appointment 2016 (No. 2)—Disallowable Instrument DI2016-34 (LR, 29 April 2016), together with its explanatory statement.

Ministerial code of conduct

Discussion of matter of public importance

MADAM SPEAKER: I have received letters from Ms Burch, Mr Hanson, Mrs Jones, Mr Smyth and Mr Wall proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to


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