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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 9 Hansard (23 August) . . Page.. 3577 ..


There is much to celebrate in this budget. But every member here knows that when one budget ends, another starts. Our jobs in representing our community and doing the best we can for them are never ending.

City Renewal Authority

MS LE COUTEUR (Murrumbidgee) (4.37): Unfortunately, this morning the debate on the City Renewal Authority did not happen. I got down here about 20 seconds after I needed to to talk about the appropriation for the CRA. So I will briefly go through some of what I would have said had I had the opportunity earlier.

A couple of weeks ago I was able to go to a Canberra urban and regional futures seminar, which had as its speaker Malcolm Snow, the head of the CRA. He had a bunch of slides. In particular, he had one about stretch targets and quality design. He said that the CRA was aiming for a 30 per cent tree canopy cover, an eight-star NatHERS energy rating and a 90-plus walkability score.

He said that it would encourage and promote low carbon precinct design and practice, transition away from fossil fuels, divert organics from landfill and provide EV charge capability. Of course, these are all great sustainability initiatives. I am really in favour of all of them. But I guess the questions I have are these: first, how is the CRA going to achieve this? Secondly, why is this happening only in the area covered by CRA? Why can this not happen for the whole of the ACT?

The other issue I would like to raise while I am talking about the CRA is this: why is housing affordability not one of these stretch targets as part of quality design? Housing affordability is something we talk about a lot here. It is because Canberra has a higher rate of homelessness. I think it is something that the CRA needs to regard as one of its stretch targets to do something about.

Trees are important. Of course, I am very much in favour of trees but people are also important. I would like to see the CRA achieve all of its stretch targets, contribute towards more affordable housing for the people of the ACT and work out how to get all of this over all of the ACT.

Budget—rates

MRS KIKKERT (Ginninderra) (4.39): There are many things to look forward to about the end of winter and the promise of spring: the riot of golden wattle; longer, warmer days; the flowering of the territory's many ornamental plum trees; the countdown to summer holidays. And then there is the arrival of the ACT government's rates notices.

I think very few completely honest people will say that they eagerly look forward to opening their letterbox and finding any bill. But the sense of dread experienced by Canberra's hardworking home owners at this time of year has only intensified as the annual rates hit from this Labor-Greens government has swelled. This year's ACT budget includes record levels of taxation. For the first time, the budget paper


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