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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 13 Hansard (19 November) . . Page.. 3726 ..

MR CORBELL (continuing):

of the accrual basis of these figures. That is the basis upon which we developed this budget-and indeed how budgets have been developed in the territory for some time.

Mr Speaker, the reduction in overall revenue this year is $61/2 million in accrual terms-and only $21/2 million next year. Already this financial year, we have borne most of the reduction in revenue, because that reduction relates mostly to the release of the Yerrabi 2 estate as a government land development project. It is already happening. We have already effectively borne most of the costs-and there will be a slight cost next year of only $21/2 million.

It is important to note that we are very well established with the development of the Yerrabi 2 estate. In fact, Yerrabi 2 has proved to be so popular that we have had to bring forward stage 2A of that estate from February to this month.

The first stage was oversubscribed. Overwhelmingly, people are saying to the Gungahlin Development Authority, which is managing the project on behalf of the government, "We are really glad we have the opportunity to purchase land direct, without being tied in to a builder through a house and land package. We can purchase land direct from the government and then make our own judgments as to the sort of house we want to build and what sort of builder we want to engage."

Mr Speaker, that is very different from the process which existed under the Liberal Party, whereby the only way you had access to land was if you entered into an agreed house and land package. When it comes to giving consumers the opportunity to design a house that meets their needs, the design of which is hopefully going to be more environmentally sustainable, getting direct access to land is one way of trying to achieve that.

We will sell a total of approximately 75 blocks in Yerrabi 2 estate this financial year, which is a significant increase. Although in the budget we had projected no sales for this financial year, already our conservative calculations have meant that the government is ahead. The government is ahead.

The attack by the MBA and the HIA is really nothing more than a thinly disguised attempt to protect the interests of a small number of their members in the land development industry. Instead of looking at the opportunities for collaborating with government through joint ventures (through public/private partnerships) they are trying to protect their own vested interests-their oligarchical arrangements, essentially-in land development, at this stage. Government land development will not only return a profit to the community, it is going to provide better outcomes for the design of our community.

People are sick of crowded suburbs, narrow roads and lack of open space. The government is using two key mechanisms to address this-not only through better regulation and improved planning controls, but also through injecting the social dividend into planning of new estates through government land development. It is an important initiative, Mr Speaker-and one to which the government remains committed.

MS GALLAGHER: Minister, can you please advise the Assembly of the other benefits the people of the ACT will receive from this important initiative?

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