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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 2 Hansard (11 March) . . Page.. 573 ..



associated documents. On Saturday, 20 February, we placed advertisements in the public notices section of the Canberra Times inviting public comment on the draft program. We also arranged for a similar advertisement to be placed in the Chronicle.

As chair of the committee, I also wrote to key organisations to tell them that the committee was considering the draft capital works program. I wrote on behalf of the committee to each person and organisation who appeared before the committee in the last year as well as to a number of other people in the community. My letter and the newspaper advertisements advised the public that copies of the draft program were available from the committee secretariat. I wish to inform the house that to date over 20 people have contacted the committee for copies of the program.

The advertisements also stated that the Urban Services Committee expected to hold public hearings into the draft capital works program on Friday, 12 March, and Tuesday, 16 March. Arrangements are well in hand for these public hearings. This Friday government officials will address the committee. Next Tuesday members of the public will have the same opportunity. In view of the public interest in the draft program, the committee wrote to the Speaker to ask him to authorise broadcasting of these proceedings, and I am pleased to advise that he has agreed to this request.

Members know that my committee has a very tight deadline for this inquiry. The parliament has directed that we report by 24 March, only two weeks from now. We expect to meet this deadline, but I would like to take the opportunity to mention the other activities of my committee. They include inquiring into the number of restricted taxi, multicab, plates. We have held two public hearings so far and another is planned for 26 March. We are inquiring into an appropriate tree management and protection policy for the ACT. One public hearing has been held and another is scheduled for 19 March. We are inquiring into draft variation to the Territory Plan No. 109, residential land use policies for the B11 and B12 areas of North Canberra. One public hearing has been held and another is to take place on Friday, 26 March. We are inquiring into the Motor Traffic (Amendment) Bill (No. 4) 1998 and the amendments referred by this place to my committee on 9 December last year. We are inquiring into the code of practice for the placement of movable signs in public places, which was referred by this place on 19 November last year.

As well as these inquiries, the Urban Services Committee is also receiving briefings in public from officers on planning for community facilities at Kippax, and the use of planning approvals and associated matters in relation to the old Ainslie school. Of course, the committee also deals with routine matters that come to each of the parliament's standing committees, such as statutory appointments and requests by the Minister for comment on interstate agreements and other matters affecting the Urban Services Department.

I mention these activities not to compare ourselves with other committees but to demonstrate the large volume of work before our committee. I would like to thank my colleagues, Mr Dave Rugendyke and Mr Simon Corbell, for their willingness to take on new tasks and for their cooperative approach to the committee work, as well as the clerk, Mr Rod Power. I believe it is important to keep the parliament informed of what committees are doing, and I hope this statement has done this in relation to the Urban

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