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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 13 Hansard (Thursday, 18 November 2010) . . Page.. 5666 ..

Perhaps the fee schedule should reflect where the locations are. I think we all know the problem is really in Civic and maybe a bit in Kingston and Manuka. But the further you are away from the CBD, if the problem decreases, why would you not have a structure that looks at that? That is because, again, the minister has not done his work.

The minister was very critical of the Liberals for bringing this on today. The Liberals asked for these documents to be tabled when we had the debate so that we could have a fulsome debate. They were only made public in the last sitting period. We have had to go out and talk with people. This is the problem with this government. They do everything at the last minute. The problem is that the Greens let them get away with it. The Greens are complicit in this.

It has taken us a couple of weeks to go and talk to people and that is why we are bringing it on today. We went and took the regs and the structure to the community and we asked them what they thought. This is the first available opportunity, having done our work, to bring it on in this place.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (12.04): The Canberra Liberals will not be supporting Mr Rattenbury’s amendments because they are a cop-out. They are an absolute cop-out. The excuses that were given were so weak, so wrong and so out of touch that there is no way that we can give credence to them by supporting these amendments.

The idea of removing the word “disallowance” and substituting “review” is absolutely and utterly risible. What Mr Rattenbury is doing, as one of our staff said yesterday, is saying: “We are going to hit you over the head with a sledgehammer. Because of my amendments, we will be able to come back and say to liquor licensees, ‘How did that feel for you?’” That is what this is about. These fees are going to hit people, not just the big end of town but small people and people in off-licences who are struggling against large chains to make a living. They are all going to be slugged by this fee schedule.

What Mr Rattenbury is doing is admitting that the $100,000 threshold is ridiculous. He has admitted that there is a whole lot of stuff that should be done but he is prepared to sign up to the Labor Party because this is what the Greens do in this town. He has actually admitted by his words that most of what is in this fee schedule is pretty substandard but overall, on the balance of things, he is prepared to sign up to the substandard. He is prepared to say to liquor licensees, the owner of the local supermarket who has a liquor licence, the owner of the local stand-alone liquor store in the suburbs: “We think that this is fair enough. We are going to hit you and then we will come back and see what effect it has.”

I contend that, if we hit these people, there will be fewer of them to consult next time. It will be a lot easier job because there will be fewer of them to consult. The message from Mr Rattenbury today is: “It is too difficult.” If Mr Rattenbury does not want to disallow this today, he had plenty of opportunities to call a halt to this process at any time he liked.

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