Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Sittings . . . . PDF . . . . Video

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 22 April 2021) . . Page.. 1039 ..

improved spatial planning with district-level planning; and improve the design quality of places and developments to improve community amenity when delivering mixed-use development and attractive, affordable, sustainable new estates.

Through this work, we will encourage investment in new buildings. We will facilitate a conversation about how we can best manage population growth in our city, adaptively re-use our landmark buildings, and extend the lifespan of and reinvent key buildings. Canberra will maintain its iconic character while we create new places and spaces.

The ACT Parks and Conservation Service is within my land management portfolio. I would like to report on some of the exciting initiatives being funded and delivered this financial year. Of great interest to the community is the implementation of our fire and flood recovery program following the 2020 Orroral Valley bushfire. Funding to support the recovery program has been sought from various sources, including through an insurance claim, the commonwealth bushfire recovery program and direct funding from the ACT government.

In the 2020-21 financial year, the ACT government has directly invested $1.066 million in the infrastructure replacement program, which includes the repair and replacement of walking trails and the replacement of damaged signage. An additional $215,000 has been invested in sediment erosion control work, primarily in the upper Cotter catchment. A further $90,000 is being invested in feral animal control, to enable the environment to recover.

The government is also delivering environmental offset commitments. We will continue to protect native species and their habitats. To add to strategic assessment sites in west Belconnen and Gungahlin, Nadjung Mada Nature Reserve will be established. This work will support the government’s Indicative Land Release Program, providing places to live, work and visit for future Canberrans. An additional $199,000 has been committed in the current financial year to support these initiatives and deliver the environmental biodiversity offset commitments required to enable future land releases in Kenny and west Belconnen.

$800,000 has been committed to replace the Parks and Conservation Service’s emergency service radios. The new radios are compliant with, and will utilise, the territory radio network managed by the ACT Emergency Services Agency. This critical communications system will assist in Parks and Conservation Service operations on a day-to-day basis, as well as during emergencies.

During the first year of the pandemic, the Parks and Conservation Service was able to contribute to the valuable and important Jobs for Canberrans program. The directorate employed 32 staff under this program, with most employed in park ranger and general service officer positions. The program not only provided jobs for people in a time of crisis but also greatly assisted the Parks and Conservation Service with the delivery of their works program.

The initiatives I have described today provide an indication of the many projects that are being delivered within the land and planning portfolios. This is not everything that

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Sittings . . . . PDF . . . . Video