Page 1588 - Week 05 - Thursday, 2 June 2022

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The building levy and the training levy are both set as a small percentage of the total project cost. They are necessary to ensure that the ACT is able to continue to ensure that community standards around building quality are maintained and the industry is properly trained to perform the required work. This is the same treatment as for other owners who are required to remove other hazardous materials or undergo other sorts of remediation work. The cost of these levies can be included in the concessional loan amount by owners corporations, if they wish. I think that clears it up, Madam Speaker.

Government—land and property reports

MR GENTLEMAN: I have another matter, following Mr Milligan’s question that I took on notice. I draw Mr Milligan’s attention to evidence from EPSDD officials to the public accounts standing committee on 27 April 2022. This matter was raised during those hearings and officials advised the following:

With respect to the property reports, the January to June 2021 report was published on the website on 17 November 2021. The July to December 2021 report is just being finalised. There have been some delays and it will be uploaded, it is anticipated, in June this year … There have been some delays in terms of getting the right data and input from some of the agencies that we work with to gather the data.

A transcript of that evidence at the hearing is available and online.

Health—alcohol and other drugs strategy

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: Mr Braddock asked me whether there has been modelling on the cost of tobacco to the ACT economy. Mr Davis had in fact asked me the same question on notice. I signed a response on 20 April, which I hope has been lodged. For the record, there is no specific modelling on the cost of tobacco to the ACT economy.

The National Drug Research Institute at Curtin University estimates that in 2015-16 the tangible cost of smoking in Australia, such as reduced economic output, medical and social care costs, was $19.2 billion and the intangible cost borne by the smoker and their family, such as reduced quality of life, pain and suffering, was estimated as costing a further a $117.7 billion.

ACT Health—nurses

MS STEPHEN-SMITH: Yesterday Mrs Kikkert asked me a question which I will read out in full. I took it on notice because I was not quite sure her maths were making sense. Her question was:

My question is to the Minister for Health. Last month, on 17 May, the Canberra Times reported that, in March last year, there were 3,002 full-time nurses employed by Canberra Health Services. Twelve months later, in March this year, there were 3,280 employed, an increase of 278 nurses. However, 365 nursing staff either resigned or retired last year. Minister, if 278 extra nurses were employed, yet 365 nursing staff left, doesn’t that mean Canberra is going backwards on nurse numbers?

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