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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 6 Hansard (23 May) . . Page.. 1642 ..

MR BERRY (continuing):

Ms Horodny then said:

You wonder why the Labor and Liberal Governments, both Labor and Liberal Parties, buckle at the knees when big business is involved. You have to think about election funding and all that sort of thing.

Mr Speaker, I would ask Ms Horodny to table the evidence that she has in relation to this matter or, alternatively, unreservedly apologise to members who have been impugned by this remark.

MS HORODNY: Mr Speaker, if Mr Berry is offended by my comments, then I am quite happy to apologise.

Interim Report on the Acton-Kingston Land Swap

Debate resumed from 15 May 1996, on motion by Mr Moore:

That the report be noted.

MR KAINE (10.50): Mr Speaker, this report has generated some debate already because, of course, the subject matter is a very contentious issue and one which requires very careful consideration on the part of both the committee and this house. The land that we are talking about - the two areas, Kingston foreshore and Acton Peninsula - are quite crucial to the future of Canberra. Acton, of course, is crucial because it has almost become a sacred site in the eyes of the community. Therefore, it is very important that it be preserved and used for something of national significance or, alternatively, some purpose which the ACT community finds to have value. It is a very sensitive issue and, therefore, one that requires detailed and careful consideration. On the other hand, the Kingston foreshore is a large area of land which is lying unused, is unsightly, returns no revenue whatsoever to the Territory and yet has the potential to generate very significant revenues for the community and, in its redevelopment, to generate many jobs and give a lift to the currently dormant ACT economy. It is important that we get on with the job, but it is important that we get it right.

I think the Chief Minister may have been a little disappointed that the committee did not come back with a report that unreservedly supported her proposal. It would have been great had we been able to do that; but, as I said, this is a sensitive issue and one that needs to be thought through properly. The committee gave a lot of time and attention to this matter, took a lot of evidence, weighed that evidence carefully and came back with a report that said to the Government, "It is a good idea, and we agree; but there are two or three things that need to be negotiated a little further in the interests of this community".

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