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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 2 Hansard (1 March) . . Page.. 508 ..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

tenants to a degree that recognises the difference in economic and bargaining power between lessors and tenants.

I look forward to hearing the arguments that will be provided about the detail of the amendments. The amendments that each of us who have been actively involved in the process will be moving are quite detailed and quite significant. As I indicated before, the Labor Party has a significant number of amendments. I will be speaking in more detail to my amendments during the detail stage, which I understand and expect will be next Tuesday.

The Labor Party has indicated that it will not support some of Mr Rugendyke's amendments but is happy to approve others. I look forward to Mr Rugendyke's explanation of the position he will put, and the Labor Party will respond in detail in our comments on Mr Rugendyke's proposals, particularly those in relation to preferential treatment at the end of the lease, and we will set out at that time our understanding and our expectations in relation to the administration of those provisions.

Similarly, I know Ms Tucker has a significant number of amendments that staff in my office have negotiated quite deeply on, as they have with Mr Rugendyke and his office and Mr Stefaniak and his office.

I conclude by saying there has been a significant degree of consultation on this bill amongst offices, to the point that, as I understand it, the government is quite happy to accept most of the Labor Party's amendments, perhaps all. I do not want to be too explicit about that. Through the detailed negotiating process that has gone on, we can achieve a very good outcome on this piece of legislation. I commend members of staff of Ms Tucker, Mr Rugendyke and the minister who have been involved with my office in those very heavy and detailed negotiations.

MS TUCKER (4.29): I will address my comments to the government's bill. That is not to say that I believe the government has got it right. My inclination is to support Mr Rugendyke's bill as I am more sympathetic to his intent, which is essentially to protect the interests of tenants, but I have been advised that the government bill is technically more cohesive, and I am aware that it is most likely to be passed, albeit with quite a number of amendments.

I will address my general comments to the principles at stake and some areas where the Greens have a different view from the government. I would also like to commend the government for engaging in an extensive process in developing this bill. I should be careful. The last time I commended the government, all the lights went out. It is not happening again so it must be all right today. It was a good process, and people have worked well together in the Assembly, although I am pleased we are adjourning after the in-principle stage today, because I do not think people have had an opportunity to look at the more recent amendments.

It is worth picking up the details of the process, as I do not believe the outcome is as fair or open handed as it first appears. In respect of substantive issues of tenants' rights, members of the working party with an interest in property ownership-the landlord lobby-consistently outvoted tenant representatives. It was understood at the time that

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