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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 March 2018) . . Page.. 835 ..

indicated that it was zoning policies and planning policies that were the greatest contributor to housing unaffordability. That is why we are having a conversation now, led by the minister for planning, on housing choices.

MR PARTON: Chief Minister, why are your government’s policies having a negative impact on first homebuyers: young Canberra families and residents who fall within the bottom three income quintiles?

MR BARR: The recent data actually shows that first homebuyers now constitute more than 20 per cent of the market, which is significantly above the 10-year average for first homebuyer share of the ACT housing market. Stamp duty, particularly for the bottom third of the housing market in terms of price, has been cut very significantly. So our approach of concentrating the first five years of stamp duty cuts on the most affordable properties is making a difference.

The government, through the variety of policy work that is underway in both Minister Gentleman’s planning portfolio and the Deputy Chief Minister’s work in housing affordability, together with continued tax reform and land release, is focusing on directing further policy initiatives to improve housing affordability. The ACT is performing much better than New South Wales, particularly, and Victoria in relation to housing affordability. Canberra is more affordable than Sydney or Melbourne.

MR COE: Chief Minister, why has your government gouged people with land prices, squeezed them with rates and failed to abolish stamp duty as you promised?

MR BARR: We have not, and we have cut stamp duty in every budget when I have been Treasurer. That is five stamp duty cuts more than the Leader of the Opposition would ever deliver because he does not believe in the policy. He does not support it. You cannot come in here and criticise—

Mr Coe interjecting—

MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Coe, let the Chief Minister answer the question.

MR BARR: You cannot come in here and criticise the government’s stamp duty cuts when you have opposed them all the way through. You opposed cutting stamp duty, and you have on two occasions.

Mr Wall: On a point of order, Madam Speaker, will you remind the Chief Minister to address his remarks through the chair, please?

MADAM SPEAKER: I will and I will also remind Mr Coe not to—

Mr Hanson interjecting—

MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Hanson, we do not need that, thank you, at all. Do you have anything to add, Chief Minister?

MR BARR: No. I think they have said enough, Madam Speaker.

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