Page 437 - Week 02 - Tuesday, 22 March 2022

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MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER: is unparliamentary, and I ask the Leader of the Opposition to withdraw.

Ms Lee: I did not call him a liar, Mr Assistant Speaker. I said, “Is that what you are going to be doing? Are you going to be lying?”

MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER: I am asking you to withdraw.

Ms Lee: If you want me to withdraw that, I will withdraw that, but I did not call him a liar.

MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER: Thank you. Mr Gentleman, have you concluded or do you require an extension of time?

MR GENTLEMAN: I have; thank you, Mr Assistant Speaker.

MR PARTON (Brindabella) (3.51): What we see here today is the amazing contrast between us and them. Earlier in the month, the Chief Minister said that the ACT government’s decisions have no impact on the price of housing in Canberra. That is what he said in the hearing. He said something like, “Yes, it is tough, but it is not my problem.” Today, the Leader of the Opposition has a motion that steps up to the plate and accepts that the ACT government should—and must—take some responsibility in putting downward pressure on housing affordability in whatever way it can!

This is one of the biggest issues facing our city today, and for the Chief Minister to say that it has nothing to do with him and his government is just ludicrous. It is absolutely ludicrous. This government should be focusing on the things that are within its control. If Labor and Greens do not have the will—because that is what it gets down to here—to make change in this space, we are happy to highlight what they should be doing, because this is desperately important to so many people.

How many times does the Liberal Party need to bring this issue to the forefront before there is meaningful action? How many times do people of Canberra who are in search of a home—whether it be a first home, a family home, or a forever home—need to bring to our attention the crisis facing their house-owning prospects or even their renting prospects? Surely this government cannot continue to ignore the people. The government can reject us all it likes, but it cannot continue to reject the people of Canberra.

In its original form, this motion more than anything else signals that there is an issue that is as important to us as it is to the people of Canberra. I lived in hope that Labor and the Greens would think twice before amending it but, as is often the way in here, we have seen a knock-down-rebuild of what was probably a nice four-bedroom home on a sensible block into a multiunit! That is what has happened here. I note that the first “calls on” from Ms Berry goes straight to the commonwealth government—the feds. I ask: what on earth are Labor nurses going to do if Albo ends up in the Lodge? If that occurs—note that I say “if”—whose fault will everything be? That is going to be pretty interesting. The government would have to find some new writers then.

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