Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Sittings . . . . PDF . . . . Video

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 02 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 February 2018) . . Page.. 554 ..

yet. Again, Minister Fitzharris is often quick to criticise and say that there is no consultation on amendments from the opposition or on our position on motions, but to have the amendment circulated whilst I am on my feet and speaking is a new level. I will look forward to reading it whilst the minister speaks. I will address it once it has been moved.

MS FITZHARRIS (Yerrabi—Minister for Health and Wellbeing, Minister for Transport and City Services and Minister for Higher Education, Training and Research) (6.09): I thank Mr Wall for the motion today, which we have discussed previously and I have also discussed personally with Mr Wall. I note for the record that I was away unwell yesterday. I am back here today, not entirely 100 per cent. One, it was not an evil glare. Two, it was an oversight on my part that the amendment was circulated late in the process. I apologise for that. I note that I provided Mrs Kikkert many hours advance notice of my amendment, at her request. I would generally be happy to do so. It was an oversight on this occasion that I do apologise for.

Mr Wall was right in saying when he opened the debate on this important motion today that there have been many debates in the chamber about green bin initiatives from both sides. I take the opportunity to remind Mr Wall that it was a longstanding commitment from the Canberra Liberals, certainly in the 2012 election and, I believe, in the 2016 election as well, to have a round table, which I understand was not held prior to the last election. The commitment to have a green bins service was one that I do not think the community ever really got a sense of before they went to the polls in 2016. He is right in saying that all parties in the chamber, certainly the Labor and Liberal parties, have changed their views on this over the course of over a decade, I believe. But we are where we are, and that is that.

In the lead-up to the 2016 election, indeed in the budget prior to that, the government did announce that if re-elected we would provide a green waste bin to every household in the ACT that wanted one. We announced at that time that a 15-month pilot program in Weston Creek and Kambah would get underway. That pilot commenced in April last year and helped inform the best way to roll out the service across the whole of Canberra, consistent with Labor’s election commitment, so that every resident who wants a green bin will have one. The pilot provided eligible households with a fortnightly collection of a 240-litre garden waste bin on registration and a one-off payment of $50.

Since its commencement, the green bins pilot has been well received by the residents of Weston Creek and Kambah. As at December 2017, 8,746 households had registered, representing a take-up rate of 53 per cent. In Tuggeranong just over 10,000 residents have opted in to the service. Therefore, including Tuggeranong in the pilot program with Weston Creek and Kambah, the total number is fast approaching 20,000 registrations, emphasising the strong support in the community for this service.

Around 34 per cent of the households in Weston Creek and Kambah that have elected to receive a green bin are concession card holders and therefore exempt from the one-off payment of $50. Another way in which the government is making green bins more accessible to all Canberrans is by providing assistance to residents who are

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Sittings . . . . PDF . . . . Video