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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 March 2018) . . Page.. 865 ..


us that the reforms are being implemented. He is dreaming. He knows that it is clearly not the case. It is abundantly clear that, despite the best of intentions from the minister and his directorate, the vast majority of these reforms have not been implemented.

And I do not know exactly why. It is not good enough to just say, “The wheels of bureaucracy turn slowly.” If the wheels are turning slowly, then speed them up. My message to the Labor/Greens government is this: you have very clearly identified what the problems are and how to fix them. Let us stop talking about it and just do it. I cannot believe the inaction from the government in this hotly contested space in an area which is giving enormous grief to so many people.

These reforms are worthy of our support and positive benefits for the community and the building industry. This motion is a simple one. It is, I think, very uncontroversial. It is basically an appeal to the government to do its job, to implement the reforms that it has said it would make. We are not asking for anything more than this; and when we say “implement the reforms”, we mean show some backbone and actually enforce them.

We appreciate that building regulation reform can be complex, so we are not insisting that everything be completed in the next week or the next month even, but rather this motion calls on the government to have everything in place by the end of this calendar year, and I do not think that that is too much to ask for.

Now, again, I am sure that things have been watered somewhat down in these amendments but, at the end of the day, I think that what we were attempting to do was to create some noise in this space to move in the direction of having these reforms implemented, and I think that is what we have achieved here. I certainly hope that that is the case. I look forward to hearing comments from my colleagues, including those on the crossbench from Ms Le Couteur, and I look forward to hearing from Mr Gentleman.

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Minister for Planning and Land Management and Minister for Urban Renewal) (4.45): I thank Mr Parton for the motion today. I have circulated, as Mr Parton mentioned, an amendment that I believe addresses the key issues raised by Mr Parton. It also calls on the government to report on the implementation of the 43 actions that are taking place and publish updates every six months, which I think Mr Parton was calling for in his speech earlier.

This government is aware of the effects on the community and industry of poorly designed and constructed buildings. That is why the government initiated a review of the territory’s building regulatory system. It is why we persisted with the review, even when some said there were not really any problems and that there was no need for major reforms, just a bit of waterproofing in apartment buildings and dealing with one or two cowboys. It is why we put together a comprehensive reform program, and it is why we have introduced, and continue to put in place, reforms arising from that review.


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