Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 2658 ..
MR CORBELL (continuing):
As the government has previously indicated, the issues around the operation of the land development activity outside of the government's arrangements-that is, the financial implications and the impact on territory finances-have been substantially and more appropriately addressed through the estimates committee process. Indeed, the Estimates Committee has made a recommendation on land development activity that is separate from the Planning and Land Bill-that is, that the government conduct an independent analysis of the financial model for land development. That is in response to a comment I put to the Estimates Committee that the government would welcome such a recommendation. Next week the Treasurer will be tabling the government's response to the Estimates Committee report, including that recommendation.
I want to make very clear the government's view on this. The issues of the financial implications of land development activity are separate from the issues surrounding the governance of the planning and land authority and the land development agency. The Planning and Land Bill is the vehicle that establishes the government's arrangements for both: where the powers sit-between government, Assembly and authority-in relation to the operations of the land act and planning functions in the ACT; and how the land development agency should conduct itself.
That is what the Planning and Land Bill is about; it is not about the financial model. The Estimates Committee itself has drawn that distinction in its recommendations. It said clearly that the financial issue should be subject to an independent analysis, which is a recommendation in response to a comment I made to the committee, and it said that the Planning and Land Bill should be considered by an Assembly committee.
I put on record the government's clear and strong view: the government's implications are separate from financial implications. The Planning and Land Bill is about governance arrangements; the budget is about the financial implications. The Estimates Committee has drawn that distinction as well in saying that there should be an independent financial analysis of the budget implications and a separate inquiry into the governance arrangements to do with the Planning and Land Bill.
I put the strong view that the government believes this inquiry should deal with the bill as outlined in the proposed referral: that it is an inquiry into what the bill is about, which is the governance and the relationship, and where the powers sit, between the proposed planning authority, the land development agency, the executive, the government and the community.
MS DUNDAS (11.50): I support the Planning and Land Bill and any consequential amendments that might accompany it being examined by the Planning and Environment Committee. The bill provides a framework for a large and complicated change to the way planning is conducted in the territory, and I believe that the committee and the community should have the opportunity to have input into and comment on this new process.
I also continue to have a number of concerns, that the committee could address. The alterations to the appeals process is of great concern, and I believe a greater investigation of how the authority will review its own decisions is warranted.