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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 10 Hansard (Thursday, 7 October 2021) . . Page.. 2845 ..

level to develop consistent regulatory and safety protocols so that automated vehicle technologies can be trialled and introduced safely to ACT roads, when they become available. I look forward to continuing to engage with the community, other jurisdictions and partners in industry on this important work.

I present the following paper:

Automated vehicles—Ministerial statement, 7 October 2021.

I move:

That the Assembly take note of the paper.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

COVID-19 pandemic—planning and development consultation

Ministerial statement

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Manager of Government Business, Minister for Corrections, Minister for Industrial Relations and Workplace Safety, Minister for Planning and Land Management and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.21): Madam Speaker, the impacts of the COVID-19 public health emergency on the Canberra community over the last 18 months have been far-reaching. Many challenges have been faced and continue to be faced. The impacts on work and productivity across all areas of our economy include the planning and development sector and the construction industry.

The ACT government, including the Environment, Planning and Sustainable Development Directorate, is committed to ensuring that stakeholders and members of our community have a genuine opportunity to engage in, and have their say on, the planning policies, programs and services that are important to them.

There are important conversations to be had about how we deliver good planning outcomes for Canberrans across a number of projects. These discussions will result in better policies and programs to support the interests of industry and the community more broadly. It is no secret that policies and projects are enriched by community and stakeholder input. That is why we have had comprehensive whole-of-government guidelines for consultations, campaigns and other engagements.

We are mindful of the effects the COVID-19 lockdown and restrictions on gatherings have had, and will continue to have, on consultation processes. The government paused much of its engagement activity at the start of our current lockdown, in recognition of the need to support the public health response. The government prioritised messages about COVID-19 and redirected public service resources to the COVID-19 surge workforce.

I wish to take a moment to thank directorate staff who continue their commitment to business as usual in a time that is anything but, as well as staff who are contributing to the government’s public health response to get the important messages related to COVID-19 out to the community as a priority.

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