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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 08 Hansard (Tuesday, 3 August 2021) . . Page.. 2159 ..


Leave granted.

MS LEE: I table the following out-of-order petition:

Petition which does not conform with the standing orders—Planning—Griffith (337 signatures).

I speak on the petition by the Griffith Narrabundah Community Association—the GNCA—calling on the Assembly to reject draft variation 375. The petition and the out-of-order petition are signed by a total of 853 residents. I want to be clear that, despite the spin by the Minister for Planning, the Canberra Liberals do not oppose demonstration housing. The demonstration housing project, which includes Manor House in Griffith, plays an important role in showcasing different types of development and giving Canberrans more agency to choose from different ways of living.

What the Canberra Liberals do oppose, however, is poor planning. We have seen some of the worst cases of poor planning under this Labor-Greens government. And we share the concerns of the community about an RZ2 development happening on an RZ1 block. The community is fed up with planning decisions that go against what the community wants and what the community expects. And, more importantly, the community is fed up with a government that does not comply with its own planning rules.

The petitioners contend that spot variations to the Territory Plan, should not be used as a mechanism to allow dense development on RZ1 blocks, and we share those concerns. There has also been some commentary in the media that the minister has labelled this petition a ‘deliberately misleading scare campaign’. This is a huge slap in the face for—and shows huge disrespect of—the members of the GNCA and the over 850 residents in my electorate who are raising genuine concerns and expressing a genuine no confidence in the minister’s ability to adhere to the government’s own planning laws.

As a local member, I cannot ignore the more than 500 objections that were raised to the draft variation back in April. As an Assembly, we cannot ignore the 850 signatures to these petitions nor the concerns about this issue . That is why the people elect us—to represent their views in this place. And that is why I sponsored this petition. The Canberra Liberals support development that is in line with community expectations. Only in the last month, the Minister for Planning announced that we need to start again with our planning laws. That is long overdue, but it is an inconceivable admission of this government’s longstanding failures when it comes to planning in our city.

We know that the Canberra community have little confidence in our planning system, and this is yet another way of undermining community expectations of what they will see in our suburbs. I implore all members in this place, especially the members of the committee that this draft variation will be referred to, to remember the 853 residents who signed this petition. I note that as a variation to the Territory Plan, DV375 will be


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