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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 5 Hansard (3 May) . . Page.. 1397 ..

MR HUMPHRIES (continuing):

provide some very valuable insight into gambling patterns and gambling behaviour of people in the Territory. The results of this research will be carefully analysed and will be incorporated, where relevant, into the review of the Gaming Machine Act 1987.

While the ACT Gambling and Racing Commission conducts these important tasks, it would inappropriate for the restrictions on the number of gaming machines permitted in the Territory to be relaxed. We do not want to pre-empt the results of this review in any way.

It therefore makes sense, Mr Speaker, to extend the current restrictions on the number of gaming machines that can be licensed for a further 12 months to allow for this comprehensive review to take place and the results made available.

I commend the Gaming Machine Amendment Bill 2001 to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Quinlan ) adjourned to the next sitting.

Rates and Land Tax Amendment Bill 2001

Mr Humphries , pursuant to notice, presented the bill and its explanatory memorandum.

Title read by Clerk.

MR HUMPHRIES (Chief Minister, Minister for Community Affairs and Treasurer) (10.56 ): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

I ask for leave to have my speech incorporated in Hansard.

Leave granted.

The speech read as follows:

Mr Speaker, I am pleased to present this amendment of the Rates and Land Tax Act 1926 which will define the rating factors for 2001-2002.

Members will recall that the current rating system was introduced in July 1997. This system is designed to reflect both the property owner's capacity to pay and the level of services received, and to minimise the fluctuations in rates bills from year to year.

Features of the current rating system include:

� a fixed charge for all properties except rural properties;

� a value based charge using the average of the most recent unimproved values incorporating a threshold below which no charge applies;

� different rating factors for residential, non residential and rural properties; and

� separate revenue targets to apply to the residential and non-residential sectors respectively.

Mr Speaker, this Bill adjusts the rating factors, taking into account:

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