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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 10 Hansard (Thursday, 20 September 2018) . . Page.. 3875 ..


Recommendation 6 recommends that the ACT government conduct a public review of rates and land tax systems so as to generate proposals that would provide a greater degree of fairness and consistency in rates and land tax across all housing stock in the ACT, including for unit titled properties. This is a bookend to recommendation 2. Essentially, together they call for an overhaul of the rates and land tax system in the ACT so as to resolve the very considerable problems of which contributors advised the committee.

I commend the contributors to the committee for their thoughtful contributions. I thank my colleagues Mr Pettersson, Mr Coe and Ms Cody for the thoughtful way in which this inquiry was undertaken, and I do want to point out that this is a unanimous report. I think there is one footnote that highlights a slightly different approach that Mr Coe and I would have preferred. But all of the recommendations are unanimous. It shows the good collegial approach that the committee has taken on this very important issue.

I particularly want to thank the committee secretary, Dr Lloyd, for his diligence and hard work in putting together this substantial report which, despite its size and despite the controversy of the subject, allowed us to sail through the deliberative processes fairly easily. I thank all those associated with the assembling of this report for what, I think, is an important contribution to the discussion about how we levy rates in the ACT. I commend the report to the Assembly.

MR COE (Yerrabi—Leader of the Opposition) (10.21): I, too, commend this report to the Assembly. Before I make some more substantial remarks, I would like to thank my committee colleagues for the way in which they approached this and particularly thank Dr Brian Lloyd for the very professional way that he manages the Standing Committee on Public Accounts.

Further to those internal people that have contributed to this report, I particularly want to thank all those involved in the Owners Corporation Network that really did do a huge amount in driving public interest in this issue. Of course, they also helped put together a very significant petition that led to the groundswell and the momentum for getting this committee inquiry up.

As can be seen in the six recommendations that have been put forward by the committee, it was a subject that warranted inquiry and it is a subject that warrants further attention by the ACT government. As Mrs Dunne said, quite simply the government have got it wrong and they need to go back to the drawing board.

Recommendation 2 states:

The Committee recommends that the ACT government devise a new method for determining rates and land tax for unit title properties.

Of course, implicit in that is that the old system is broken and a new system is required. Mrs Dunne and I would have preferred a more firm set of words, such as, “The committee recommends that the ACT government reverse its decision to change


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