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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 5 Hansard (10 May) . . Page.. 1546 ..


The response read as follows:

Dear Mr Duncan

Thank you for your letter of 22 February 2018 regarding petition Nos 1-18 and 5-18, lodged by Ms Le Couteur MLA about lease arrangements on behalf of the Downer Community Centre.

The ACT Government has completed a review of stand-alone community halls across the Territory and have not made any changes to the current arrangements. Licence agreements will continue under a subsidised (no rent) arrangement. The tenant is required to pay the first $500 plus GST in maintenance costs and all outgoings. The tenant retains the revenue from the casual hall hire and ACT Property Group (ACTPG) will continue to pay for capital works.

ACTPG recently met with representatives of the Downer Community Centre and were pleased to see that the property was well maintained and achieving high community use. It was good to hear of the care and dedication that the Downer Community Association Inc has contributed to the hall. The ACTPG have since formally offered the Association a licence renewal based on the above terms and this offer has been accepted.

Providing direct compensation to the Downer community for the sale of the primary school site and community zoned land is not possible in this situation. The Government funded the school from revenue collected from the Territory as a whole, and as such it would be inequitable for revenue from the sale to go back to only the Downer community rather than being used for the benefit of all Canberrans. Furthermore, the Downer community has benefited from the sale of the school site through the ongoing provision of services and a range of Government funded initiatives in recent Budgets.

Thank you for raising this matter with me. I trust this information is of assistance.

Safe and inclusive schools initiative—petition 25-17

MS ORR (Yerrabi) (11.39), by leave: The ACT safe and inclusive schools petition calls on the Assembly to support the government's efforts to ensure all children are safe and supported at any school and support the ACT's safe and inclusive schools initiative being available to all ACT schools. It is clear the Canberra community supports the ACT Labor government's commitment to ensuring all young people are safe and included in their school. Over 1,400 Canberrans showed their support for this petition, and I am proud to have been the sponsoring member. All of my Labor and Greens colleagues in this place have stood up time and time again for the rights of LGBTIQ Canberrans, and it is vital we continue to do so, especially for younger Canberrans.

We know the Canberra Liberals are some of the most conservative Liberals in the country; we only have to look to their outcry over the number of motions we have moved in this Assembly that support LGBTIQ people to know that. The petition highlights the fact that as an inclusive community Canberrans overwhelmingly support schools respecting, welcoming and celebrating diversity and encouraging


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