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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 21 August 2018) . . Page.. 3320 ..


long-term sustainability for our new suburbs, which will remain a critical consideration.

We will also provide innovative solutions to build a city for the future. This includes access to transport, sustainable environments, connectivity and energy efficiency. Engaging stakeholders from within the government and externally will be important for the government to demonstrate new ways of working which will continue to be fair, open and equitable.

We will ensure that the Suburban Land Agency continues to prove itself to the community as an organisation that can be trusted, through good governance and values-driven behaviour. The agency will engage and empower its staff to meet the government’s expectations at a strategic and operational level. I look forward to talking with the Assembly more about the work of the Suburban Land Agency over the next couple of years.

MR PARTON (Brindabella) (3.47): In the planning space, most of these spending items are uncontroversial. From a party perspective, we are in support of most of them. I do not think that I would find anyone in this chamber who would disagree with me when I say that Canberra is the best city in Australia. We all love this city. It is a fantastic place to live, to work and to raise a family. I am equally blessed, as is the planning minister, to live in the most beautiful electorate in Canberra, Brindabella. Mr Gentleman and I agree on lots of things, and this is one of the things we agree on.

This, however, does not mean that we can become complacent in our job as legislators. We are here to look ahead to an even better Canberra, and that is why planning is such an important portfolio space. I think we are all looking forward to the future for Canberra but I am not sure that we all share the same vision.

In this year’s budget it has been highlighted again that master plans for a number of group centres are yet to be finalised. I sincerely hope that this process comes to a close very soon. The Tharwa master plan has been under consideration now for some time, I think over 2½ years. The Tharwa community were first engaged on the master plan on 27 January 2016, so it is well overdue for this to be finalised and the community given some certainty about the future of their village. Tharwa is a beautiful part of Canberra and one that I am immensely proud to represent in this place. They deserve better than the way they have been treated by this government in this particular episode. I am sure you will all remember the passion with which the late Val Jeffery used to speak of his home. The Canberra Liberals are determined to continue Val’s legacy and to ensure that the Tharwa community gets the best result. I am certain that if Val were here today delivering this speech, not me, he would not be happy.

Tharwa is not the only local community whose patience has begun to wear thin. Both the Kippax and Curtin communities have also been waiting for over two years for the finalisation of their master plans. The minister will unsurprisingly defend these time frames and fall back on his ever-predictable talking points, but we know that when this government prioritises a project or decides that a particular policy is important then the time frames are cut incredibly short. This is not a point lost on the community.


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