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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 07 Hansard (Tuesday, 22 June 2021) . . Page.. 1859 ..


MS CHEYNE: I appreciate that there are two questions in that. I do not have an answer yet about how much the review will cost. I commissioned that in the last 24 hours. When I have more detail on that, I will share that detail. I am happy to share that detail.

If Mrs Jones could perhaps tell me what the first part of the question was, that would be useful.

Mrs Jones: Was the stress worth it?

MADAM SPEAKER: There is a tad of being hypothetical in that question.

MS CHEYNE: Madam Speaker, I addressed this in response to Ms Lawder’s question. There are broader benefits here to businesses. As I stated in my ministerial statement this morning, one of those is increasing awareness of businesses right across the city so that people can look, explore, find more, engage more and develop more of those relationships, which does seem to have been one of the key benefits of this scheme.

Business—ChooseCBR scheme

MS CASTLEY: Madam Speaker, my question is to the minister for business. The Canberra Liberals understand that during the trial in December, your government discovered there were a small number of businesses who were doing the wrong thing. Minister, what did those business do wrong, and what action did you take?

MS CHEYNE: There were 33 businesses who participated in the trial—I will get to the specifics of your question but just to give the broader context—who were asked to provide further information about their transactions. Generally, compliance was very good with the terms and conditions.

There were three businesses in the Belconnen region where a pattern of questionable transactions was identified. The combined value of the vouchers from this questionable pattern of transactions across the three businesses was $5,355, and the total value of the vouchers redeemed across the three businesses was $6,156. We did not recover this funding because the cost of recovering the money outweighed the actual amount of money in question, but we did make the decision to exclude these three businesses from the full rollout.

MS CASTLEY: Minister, what measures did you put in place following the trial to ensure that businesses did the right thing when ChooseCBR was relaunched?

MS CHEYNE: There was considerable communication with businesses about how the scheme worked, what they needed to record and have available and, under the terms and conditions which businesses agreed to—just like consumers did when they signed up to it—they had to keep a record of transactions for the purposes of checking.

As I identified during the trial, our process of auditing and doing these checks was a useful exercise, in that we did see patterns of questionable transactions. We did


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