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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 13 Hansard (20 November) . . Page.. 3851 ..

MR CORBELL (continuing):

aspects of the review and Parliamentary Counsel, obviously, would be responsible for any drafting.

I see no need to go further than that. I certainly do not see the need to refer the review to the Law Reform Commission, a body with no expertise in the very complex matter of land administration legislation. Finally, the question of the resourcing of the authority will be considered in the budget context to undertake this task. Regardless of who conducts the review or when, it will be necessary to expressly identify the level of resources required to perform the functions of the organisation.

Mrs Dunne appears most eager to commit the matter to review, but very reluctant to take the issues on. I find that ironic, because the same Mrs Dunne criticises this government for investigating matters and considering them fully. I believe that the time has come to debate this issue. Yes, let's review the land act, but we will not put our policy agenda on hold while Mrs Dunne gets comfortable with the notion that there will be change.

Mr Deputy Speaker, my amendment, as I have circulated it, outlines a change to Mrs Dunne's motion, noting that the government proposes to undertake a review of the land act in 2003, with an exposure draft of the new legislation in mid-2004.

I commend my amendment to members.

MS TUCKER (4.53): The Greens will not be supporting this motion, but will be supporting Mr Corbell's amendment. This motion is just another attempt by the Liberals to stop the introduction of the government's initiative to set up a planning and land authority and a government land development agency.

Whilst it is true that the land act has been in operation for more than 10 years, it is not the case that the act has not been reviewed during this time. In fact, it was the Liberals who established a major inquiry by Justice Stein in 1995 into the administration of the leasehold system. This inquiry, by its nature, also involved reviewing the operations of the land act, which led to the extensive set of amendments to the act that the Liberals introduced into the Assembly in 1996. There was also a review of the land act in 1999, again under the Liberals, as part of the ACT's commitment under the national competition policy to review the competition implications of all legislation. However, this review did not come up with any major proposals for change.

The land act combines a number of different and somewhat independent aspects of land management and development. Recently, there was a review of the heritage parts of the land act and a proposal has been put forward by the government to put them into a separate act. There have also been moves over the last few years to review the part of the act that covers environmental impact assessment, but that has not yet resulted in specific proposals for change.

I agree that the act is complex, but then again the administration of land and how it is developed are bound to be complicated as there are so many factors and stakeholders involved and many legal considerations involved in property ownership. I agree that the act is not perfect. However, I do not support the Liberals' proposal to just stop all change to the act while we do another review.

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