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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 7 Hansard (6 June) . . Page.. 1989 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

(4) A quorum for joint meetings of the committees for the purpose of this resolution shall be four members.

(5) Joint minutes of proceedings on this inquiry shall be recorded for all joint meetings of the Committee.

(6) Except where provided for in this resolution, the standing orders of the Legislative Assembly shall govern the conduct of business of joint meetings of the committees.

(7) This motion shall cease to have effect on the presentation to the Assembly of the joint report.

(8) The foregoing provisions of this resolution have effect, notwithstanding the provision of the standing orders.

Mr Speaker, this motion is about the future, we have been warned by the activities of Labor governments in the past. The government proposes to take back land development in the ACT. This motion says that that proposal needs to be scrutinised properly. If this motion is passed, it will give us the potential to save on a lot of work later.

We on this side believe that government's proposal is fraught with danger. It is driven by ideology rather than by existing problems in the market. The existing system versus the future system is a debate that needs to be had after some work has been done. That is why we believe this matter should be referred to the Public Accounts Committee and the Standing Committee on Planning and Environment sitting jointly.

The government's proposal would have wide ramifications for planning and the finances of the territory. The government briefing said that the required amount to get into land development would be something like $75 million to $150 million over two years. There would be an offset later when there was a return. But experience tells us that it will take some time before any money comes back to the government.

Mr Corbell has been spruiking to the press about how he can double the profit. When quizzed about that in the planning committee the other day, he did not know whether that doubling of profit was gross or net. That says quite clearly that the Planning Minister does not know what he is doing and that the Assembly needs to be quite cautious, because we do not know what the government intends to do. We, representing the people of Canberra, are not being given any detail.

Assertions have been made that planning in the ACT is not as good as it could be. Again, Mr Corbell, in the committee hearing the other day, said that he would be interested in a Landcom model. I would like to see the detail on that. I do not have the detail on that. The government is hiding behind the excuse that it is waiting on the budget.

The Landcom model exists in a state where they have two levels of planning: state planning and local planning. We do not have that dilemma here. The government here has direct control of planning. It has all the safeguards it needs. Supposedly the Treasurer would like to spend more on health and education but is short of money. Why then would the government become a land developer when they already have players in marketplace who can do that?

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