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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 1 Hansard (14 February) . . Page.. 179 ..

MR KAINE (continuing):

whether the directive of this place was valid. The minister now comes to this place and purports to argue as to the meaning of "review". He would have done better to have looked at the resolution, which was quite specific. The resolution said that there should be one residential unit per residential block, and the emphasis was not on the word "review".

The minister can play whatever funny games he wants, but I am astonished that he chooses to take this course of action and come to this place and try to defend his action on the semantic interpretation of what the word "review" means. It is a pathetic ploy that goes nowhere. It does not persuade me. All it persuades me is that the minister decided in his arrogance that he was not going to implement the resolution of this place.

Mr Speaker, I do not accept that. I can only warn Mr Corbell that, if he proceeds with the motion that is now before us, the minister will avoid responsibility again, because for Mr Corbell to be quite explicit in what he requires the minister to do, he would have to remove the words "recommend to the executive that the ACT Planning Authority be directed to" and insert the words "requires the executive to direct the ACT Planning Authority to do", otherwise the minister will say, "It is only a recommendation. We are not obligated to accept the recommendations of the Assembly."

It was not a recommendation in the first place; it was a directive, a requirement. It remains so today, but I can only warn Mr Corbell that the minister will try to weasel word his way out of implementing this directive, just as he is trying to weasel word his way out of implementing the last one. I find it totally unacceptable that the minister would take this course of action. It was quite clear what the Assembly required. It is quite clear now. It will be quite clear in five years time. Equally, it will be clear that the minister decided that he was not going to do it. That is why we are debating the subject again tonight.

Mr Speaker, frankly, I am appalled, and I think that the minister should go away and think about where he stands, because this is the material for a motion of censure or a motion of want of confidence. If one of those were to be brought on against the minister on the next sitting day, he would express astonishment that we would find it necessary to take that course of action. But it is the basis for just such a motion that the minister chooses deliberately and arrogantly to flout what the Assembly requires him to do. He ought to expect that if he persists in this view he will at some time in the near future be confronted with such a motion, so I would advise him to think carefully before he again moves contrary to the intention of this place and declines to do what the majority of this place directs him to do. Listen carefully, Mr Minister, I warn you.

MR MOORE (Minister for Health, Housing and Community Services) (8.27): Mr Speaker, this debate has been very interesting for me. I think that I should remind Mr Kaine that, while he was Chief Minister, he had a majority government and therefore was not under the constant threat of a no confidence motion that he has brought up. It has been the practice of all the minority governments in this place to say that the only way that they will be bound to do something is by way of legislation.

If the Assembly recommends that we do something, of course we will take that seriously. Where you require something to be done, we take it even more seriously. But in neither case does it mean that we will do it, because there is a separation between the power of

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