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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 1 Hansard (11 February) . . Page.. 174..


MR SPEAKER: I understand that it is the wish of the Assembly to debate this notice concurrently with notice No 4, relating to a reference to the Standing Committee on Planning concerning the Karralika drug rehabilitation facility. There being no objection, that course will be followed.

MRS CROSS (11.01): I move:

That the Assembly call on the Minister for Planning to:

(1) undertake full community consultation before proceeding with any development or redevelopment of the Karralika drug rehabilitation facility;

(2) not use his 'call-in' powers in order to fast-track the redevelopment/refurbishment of the Karralika drug rehabilitation facility; and

(3) admit he incorrectly used regulation 12 of the Land (Planning and Environment) Act 1992 in order to avoid the process of full public consultation in relation to the redevelopment/refurbishment of the Karralika drug rehabilitation facility.

Mr Speaker, it must now be obvious to everyone here, and to a rapidly increasing part of the wider community, that the way in which the planned refurbishment and very significant expansion of the Karralika drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in Fadden-Macarthur has been handled has been a shambles.

So far the project has been marked by, among other things, the absolutely unjustifiable prescription of the development under regulation 12 of the Land (Planning and Environment) Regulations 1992; the undeniably false claims by the minister to the media and to anyone who would listen that there had already been wide or extensive consultation with the community; and the minister's ready penchant for denigrating as hysterical nimbys those who expressed any objection to what was being planned. Consequently, there has been a rapidly building surge of anger among those whose questions or opinions have been so lightly brushed aside as irrelevant by the minister.

Yesterday, I asked the minister about his motive for prescribing the development under regulation 12 to safeguard the confidentiality of the Karralika drug and rehabilitation centre. The minister answered with customary sarcasm, claiming that I was apparently ignorant of the thrust of regulation 12 because I did not understand that the aspect of confidentiality being safeguarded under his prescription referred to the services provided at the centre rather than to the complex itself. That, Mr Speaker, was an evasive response and a blatant attempt to again shift the pressure off himself.

I know only too well what regulation 12 says, but I also know that it is logical for anyone with half a wit who may not be familiar with regulation 12 to deduce that the services provided by a drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre would be rehabilitative treatment for people with drug and alcohol problems. So for the minister to say that his prescription related to the confidentiality of the services provided and not to the facility is hogwash.


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