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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 06 Hansard (Thursday, 7 June 2018) . . Page.. 2232 ..

The government’s response to the audit highlights processes and progress since the audit was completed, including the delivery of five corrective actions, and makes further comments in relation to the recommendations handed down in the audit.

Of the 39 strategic assessment commitments the audit report identified, 19 were compliant, five had observations, 13 were noncompliant, two were undetermined and five were not applicable. The majority of the noncompliant commitments were deemed noncompliant only due to the time frames not being met, even though the commitments have been delivered.

Five corrective active requests were issues in relation to high risk items to ensure that strategic assessment commitments are met. These related to compliance and enforcement for cat containment; a review of the Taylor stage 1 construction and environment management plan; processes for reporting potential breaches of commitments; completion of the fire hazard management strategies; and the provision of educational material for future Throsby residents. I am pleased to advise that all corrective actions were completed as requested.

The audit report also made recommendations relating to improvements in the coordination and administration of the strategic assessment. These included recommendations to ensure time frames are met and to ensure accurate record keeping and publication of reports. The Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate is now overseeing the coordination of the strategic assessment and has been working with other agencies to develop and implement procedures to improve administration processes and deliver commitments on time.

Some of the key projects include implementing a procedure for the review and approval of construction and environmental management plans for greenfield projects in the strategic assessment area, ongoing work reviewing and updating the strategic assessment web page to ensure all research papers and reports are publicly available, and construction of a database to track critical dates and key decision points to ensure that we are on track to meet compliance targets.

In addition, a detailed review of administrative processes will be undertaken as part of the plan review report, which is currently being prepared. The plan review report is one of the ACT government’s commitments under the strategic assessment.

The purpose of the plan review report is to look at how the Gungahlin strategic assessment is being implemented, to acknowledge what is working well, to identify lessons learned during the first five years of implementation, and to identify potential challenges for delivering the remaining commitments in the future. The plan review report is due to be finalised in July this year.

The audit report noted that there is a need to consider potential risk to conservation areas in achieving the ecological outcomes of the strategic assessment and to ensure that adaptive management is applied. This is being considered through the plan review report.

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