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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 06 Hansard (Thursday, 5 May 2005 2005) . . Page.. 1856 ..


Agency, the ACTION Authority, the Department of Urban Services, the Commissioner for the Environment, the Canberra Public Cemeteries Truest and the Nominal Defendant.

On 9 December 2004 the committee elected not to review the report of the Canberra Public Cemeteries Trust. The annual report of the Nominal Defendant was tabled on 10 March and has been deferred for comment until the position of the independent Nominal Defendant has been reaffirmed. Public hearings were held on 22 February and 31 March 2005 to assist the committee in its assessment and clarification of issues referred to in these reports. A list of ministers and government officials attending these hearings is referred to in the report.

The purpose and the intent of the annual reports are to report on objectives that are clear and measurable and to discuss results against expectations. After much consultation, the committee recommended that chief executives institute processes to improve the level of discussion in reports, including clear and plain rationale for targets, a trend analysis, variance in performance measures and discussion of issues faced. The committee also recommended that the government elevate the contribution of volunteerism by ensuring that strategies and guidelines are developed, including for 2005-06 annual reports, to encourage agencies to analyse, develop, nurture and report in quantitative and qualitative terms on the work undertaken by volunteers in relation to government outcomes.

The committee recommended that the Department of Urban Services develop a revised approach to clarifying and sharing no waste targets, strategies, real progress and information with the community, and provide more backcasting in future annual reports. Finally, the committee recommended that, under the supervision of the ACT Planning and Land Authority, agency focus on sustainable transport issues should be treated as a fundamental whole-of-government issue and that attention and commitment should be given to a high level of integrated planning, research, advocacy and marketing, to demonstrate the rationale and efficacy of sustainable transport approaches, with this priority and need for integration being reflected through the planning process and reporting.

The committee has discussed the appropriateness of questions unrelated to the annual reports and the treatment of those questions in relation to the standing orders as well as the parliamentary committee process. We would like to thank the Minister for the Environment, Mr Jon Stanhope, the Minister for Urban Services, Mr John Hargreaves, the Minister for Planning and minister responsible for ACTION, Mr Simon Corbell, and government agency officials for their valuable time and effort in these annual report hearings for the Standing Committee on Planning and Environment.

I do wish to add my thanks and the committee’s thanks to the secretariat, especially Dr Hanna Jaireth, for their exceptional work. I commend the report to the Assembly.

MR SESELJA (Molonglo) (11.50): I want to add a couple of comments in relation to the report in respect of my additional comments at the end over Mr Corbell’s failure to answer a certain question. The question was in the context of a discussion of the sustainable transport plan. There were a number of questions about how ACTPLA, which is responsible for the sustainable transport plan, was contributing to the aims of that plan in the way it managed its business. There were a number of questions about parking and other issues.


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