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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 12 Hansard (Thursday, 1 November 2018) . . Page.. 4637 ..


I note that a couple of amendments are to be moved to my motion. I will just touch on the reasoning for the time line that is stipulated in this inquiry. Compared to many of the inquiries referred to standing committees by the Assembly, it is very long. The reason for that is that, in consultation with the chair of that committee, I have been informed of, and the Assembly will be well aware of, the workload that exists on that committee. The current inquiry that is underway into building standards is an important and very substantive body of work. The reason for a 12-month window for the inquiry is to allow that important work of that committee to continue.

Also, it would allow that committee to initiate, I envisage, the call for submissions with a significant window for public submissions. Once the building work inquiry concludes or is getting towards its tail end, there will be an opportunity for this inquiry to be picked up. It is not envisaged that this would supersede any work currently underway inside the economic development and tourism committee.

I will conclude my remarks there. I commend this motion to the Assembly. This is an opportunity for us to be at the cutting edge of technology, looking into the benefits it brings to the community and also to our economy but measuring the balance of a resident’s rights and need to have a safe and habitable home in our suburbs.

MS ORR (Yerrabi) (11.50), by leave: I move:

(1) In paragraph (1), omit “inquire”, substitute “consider an inquiry”.

(2) Omit paragraph (2).

I want to say how disappointed I am with those opposite and those on the crossbench today. Moving this motion with a fixed deadline impacts and potentially stalls a very important inquiry already underway.

The Standing Committee on Economic Development and Tourism is currently inquiring into building quality in the ACT. Hundreds of people in Gungahlin have told me about serious issues they have experienced with building quality in their homes. I spoke to one couple who were living with their adult children while their new apartment was being rectified. Upon inspection, the apartment was riddled with defects, one so bad that you could push one of the internal walls and it would move.

I know this is a serious problem because I went out to the community and I spoke with them. I doorknocked; I held street stalls; I ran an online survey. I spoke to over a hundred people who all had a story to tell me. Off the back of this clear need in our community, I have been calling for and progressing a committee inquiry into building quality.

The inquiry offers the chance for this Assembly to develop and implement meaningful reform. Today the Greens and the Canberra Liberals have effectively impacted and potentially stalled this important work aiming to help people not just in my electorate but all over Canberra.


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