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pursue that course because, without some sort of overall picture of what one wants at the end of the day, it is very difficult to work within the small environment of occasional variations which come to the committee. It makes the committee's work harder. I am sure that it makes it more difficult for proponents and probably earns - I do not know whether “earns” is the right word; but certainly brings - criticism of the department which might be avoided if there were a little bit more certainty available to people by an easily understood assessment of the planning for the future of the ACT.
This report is a good one. There has been a lot of work and a lot of contribution made to the process by the community. It is regrettable that it was delayed. The delays have resulted from an inability to complete the inquiry. Mind you, it was interfered with somewhat by an election, which slowed down the process. The message that has been sent to those people who prepare these draft variations is that all of the work has to be completed, because the committee is going to be vigilant about these issues and make sure that they are completed before variations are recommended for approval.
MR KAINE (4.40): As with many issues in the ACT, this particular proposal considered by the committee developed in a rather interesting way. It brought out - if we were not aware of it before - yet again the interrelationships that exist within this community. It highlights the fact that what happens on Yowani golf course affects not only the people who live within 200 metres of the development but also people who live a long way away from it. It says something not so much about deficiencies in the Territory Plan - although it is asserted that there are deficiencies in that plan, I am not certain that there are - but about the way that the plan is implemented and the way that the administration of the plan is carried on.
There seemed to me to be three issues that emerged that were way beyond the question of whether or not we should approve this particular variation for the land use on this small piece of ground in Lyneham. The first, and probably the most important, is the question of the community interest in that land. It was put to us quite strongly, as it has been on previous occasions, that, when people are the recipients of a concessional lease and they want to use the land for some other purpose than that for which the concessional lease was granted, there arises the question of whether the Government should not simply resume the land. It was pointed out to us quite strongly that the leasing legislation under which this current lease was granted permits the Government to do that. It was put to us quite strongly that Yowani Golf Club and the developer should not be permitted to take the benefit of being able to turn land, under a concessional lease, to commercial use. There is some validity to that argument, but we have had it argued so many times over the last 10 years or so that the principles that were put to us were not new at all. But there is that question.
A question arises as to whether the payment of the betterment tax, under whatever tax regime is currently applying, is a sufficient return to the community. The committee took the view that it could not reject this particular proposal because those arguments were again put to us. We felt that the lessee had a right to exercise his rights under his existing lease and under the existing law; that the committee should not use this as a basis for rejecting this proposal; and that the committee should not go back to the Government and say, “You should revise the policy”. We have approved it, and we have approved it on the basis that there is current law and that the community will derive such benefit as it is