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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Week 5 Hansard (25 May) . . Page.. 2249..

(1) In relation to the offer of funding from the Commonwealth Government to States and Territories to extend pension benefits to low-income self funded retirees and further to the Treasurer's comment in The Canberra Times, 29 March 2004, page 5, that the A.C.T. Government was more interested in extending concessions to pensioners and those who really need it, what is his definition of those who really need it and which groups of those in need fall within this definition;

(2) Do low-income self-funded retirees also fall within this definition of those who really need it; if not, why not.

Mr Wood

: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

(1) Core concessions under the ACT Concessions Program are available to ACT residents who are holders of a Centrelink Pensioner Concession Card or a Department of Veterans' Affairs Pensioner Concession Card or Gold Card. While some concessions are currently available to holders of Centrelink Health Care Cards, others, such as water and sewerage concessions are not. The ACT Government is committed to targeting support to those most financially disadvantaged in the community. Financial disadvantage is based on the individual having a level of income that renders them eligible for additional income support in the form of a pension.

(2) ACT core concessions are based on eligibility for one of the above pensioner concession cards. These are primarily based on income. If a self-funded retiree is on a low income, but their income is too high to render them eligible for a pension, they would not fall within the definition.

Housing-private rental properties

(Question No 1471)

Mr Cornwell asked the Minister for Disability, Housing and Community Services, upon notice, on 1 April 2004:

(1) Further to the Question on Notice No 1288 regarding the leasing of private rental properties by ACT Housing for the placement of public housing tenants and that the owners of the private properties leased to the ACT Government do not have any say over tenant selection, yet the tenant/s are responsible for payment of any property damage, then how can the owners be assured that (a) for any property damage that occurs they will be properly recompensed and (b) the tenant/s that have been given residence in their property are, in fact, responsible tenant/s and will be in a position to be able to provide payment for any property damage;

(2) If the tenant/s are not required to pay a bond, and if, having vacated or abandoned the property leased from the private owner by ACT Housing there is significant damage to that property, what funds have been set aside by the ACT Government to ensure the property is returned to the owner in its original condition, or that the owner is duly compensated.

Mr Wood

: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

(1) (a) In my response to the Member's Question on Notice number 1288, I stated that property damage which is identified as a tenant responsibility will be paid for by the tenant. If the tenant fails to make good any damage at the appropriate time, Housing

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