Page 465 - Week 02 - Wednesday, 20 February 1991

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Wednesday, 20 February 1991


MR SPEAKER (Mr Prowse) took the chair at 10.30 am and read the prayer.


Debate resumed from 12 September 1990, on motion by Mr Connolly:

That this Bill be agreed to in principle.

MR MOORE (10.31): Mr Speaker, it gives me great pleasure to continue the debate on this Bill, which I like to think of as the Godot Bill. You may recall that in his introduction to this debate, which you will find on 12 September 1990, Mr Connolly used these words, "Unlike waiting for Bernard to introduce legislation, which is about as fruitful as waiting for Godot" and they appealed to me, probably because I have been teaching English for so long. It is a play that personally I have never enjoyed one iota; nevertheless, I thought it was a quite appropriate introduction, and I enjoyed it.

Difficulties with tenancy, of course, have been a long-running problem throughout Australia - and probably broader than that. In particular, they are divided into two areas: The business or commercial sector, and the domestic or residential sector. I consulted with Mr Connolly on his Bill, and asked him why they had made no attempt to deal with what is clearly a greater problem, and that is the commercial sector. He informed me that they are in the process of doing that, but they felt that because the commercial section is so complicated they would prefer to deal with that in a separate Bill. I shall be looking forward to Mr Connolly's comments on that, or, more importantly, to the Bill that he introduces.

Of course, the concern with a Bill like this, the Landlord and Tenant (Rental Bonds) Bill, is to ensure that the rights of both parties are looked after. Like many of us, I have been both a landlord and a tenant, and I am aware of some of the difficulties faced by both, and how those difficulties should be resolved. The most significant part of it, of course, as is often the case, is the issue of money. The Rental Bond Board Bill deals largely with the deposit of the rental bonds with the Rental Bond Board. Having a third party set aside to look after those bonds is, I think, a very positive and important method of dealing with them; unlike the Canberra Times, whose editorial of 8 February started with a note, "ACT Rental-bond board is silly". In fact, I think the levity with which that

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