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outrageous and quite unacceptable behaviour in an environment we have now created through this legislation which ought to make that kind of behaviour a thing of the past. I will go so far as to say, Mr Speaker, that the matters relate to a particular landlord I will name - Lend Lease Corporation, operator of the Woden Plaza - whose behaviour appears on the face of it to have been in some cases fairly excessive. At this stage I have not given to Lend Lease the benefit of them responding to the allegations made by their tenants. It is clear that there is a large number of such tenants who appear to be highly dissatisfied with the conduct of Lend Lease. If one-quarter of what has been alleged is true, I would think Lend Lease has a considerable amount to answer for.

Mr Speaker, let me make it clear that if Mr Moore perceives in this debate that we are the blind servants of landlords he ought to think again. It is our view - indeed, we said so at the time - that there is room to improve the operation of this Act, and we should look to see how we can do that. In particular, we can look at what kinds of modification of behaviour of landlords in this Territory will occur as a result of the new legislation, to see whether we need to go further or to modify the operation of the Act in some way. However, it is perhaps a slight exaggeration to describe the Act as a whole, in its operation to date, as a complete failure. That is certainly not acknowledging the benefits which the legislation has brought to a particular number of disputes. Obviously, the legislation only commenced on 2 January this year, as did the commercial and retail leases code of practice; so it is clearly difficult to make a terribly comprehensive assessment of just what has happened in the three or four months since that time.

I am advised that the tribunal, which is located in the National Mutual Building in the city, has to date received 13 applications from tenants who are seeking assistance. These 13 applications include applications by individual tenants and group applications from up to 12 tenants. Altogether, some 50 tenants have been involved in applications before the tribunal so far. Although we are yet to appoint a registrar to the tribunal, there is an acting deputy registrar, who has conducted operations on behalf of the tribunal since its set-up time. I can report that, of those 13 applications, all are in the process of being mediated and eight of them have in fact resulted in successful mediation between the landlords and tenants involved. The remaining five applications are awaiting mediation at this point. No application thus far needs to go before the tribunal for an arbitrated settlement, although I spoke a few days ago with one tenant who believed that they were very likely to be in the tribunal soon to have a matter actually arbitrated before the tribunal proper. I indicate to the Assembly that the position of registrar of the tribunal is expected to be filled very shortly. Certainly, interviews for that position have been completed.

As was undertaken at the time the code was introduced, the Director of Consumer Affairs will convene a joint landlord-tenant working group later on this year to review the effectiveness of the code and the tribunal in the light of these sorts of experiences, to see what steps should be taken. The tribunal itself, and the code it operates together with, have not been the subject of any formal complaints up until now, although I accept the point Mr Moore makes that there are some who might feel that they do not have the capacity to enter into that process, because they are excluded in some way.

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