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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 14 Hansard (12 December) . . Page.. 4458 ..

MRS DUNNE (continuing):

be established under this part of the bill would not be in the best interests of the community. Monopoly is never good and this is what the bill would create.

By establishing the Land Development Agency the minister would impose a government-run monopoly on land servicing. The agency would also become an arbiter of taste, as we have seen in the Gungahlin experiment of Yerrabi stage 2. By creating a monopoly, this government would run land development into the ground. We know that this will happen because it has happened in the past.

The model that this minister proposes-and which he says will do everything from bringing prosperity to the workers' paradise he is trying to create, to, along the way, curing warts-is a very high-minded model that we know from experience has feet of clay. We have seen in the past that the administration of land development in the ACT by governments has been a dismal failure. In the 1970s this was so expensive that it was abandoned by the federal government.

The forays of the previous Labor government into land development by the mechanism of joint ventures was a dismal failure. The most dismal failure was the Harcourt Hill development, which was pulled out of the mire by the Liberal government. When the Liberal government came to office we found an organisation that was deeply in debt to the government and that could not meet its commitments. There were almost open riots by the leaseholders who had been made promises by the joint venture partners which could not be met. Those promises had to be picked up and met by ACT taxpayers. The promises included a country club, which was built at taxpayers' expense because the joint venture could not fulfil this role. Because of those promises, ACT taxpayers are today encumbered with running a health club and a country club.

Do we seriously consider that the workers' paradise that Mr Corbell is trying to create in this place will be running country clubs and golf courses? This is not the way that government should be doing their business but this is what has happened in the past and this is what will happen in the future.

In this place on a number of occasions this minister has held up and extolled the benefits and the value of Landcom in New South Wales as the model for land development. The single biggest difference between Landcom and what this minister proposes to do is that Landcom does not have a monopoly on land in New South Wales. What he proposes to do here with son of Landcom-the ACT version of Landcom-is create a monopoly.

The opposition will oppose any proposal by this minister to create a monopoly. We will do so because it is not in the best interests of the community to create a monopoly. We will warn and we will scrutinise. I know that we have no chance of voting down this ill-conceived proposal but I put this government on notice, and I put this minister on notice, that from now on and into the future we will monitor closely what is happening. Such a proposal would wreak disaster and would cost the ACT community dearly. The pilot that is being run at Yerrabi stage 2 is already costing the ACT community dearly-a monopoly that is currently delivering land at a cost which is entirely unaffordable for the average person in the ACT. Yet this is the sort of workers' paradise that this minister proposes to introduce. On top of that they are-

Mr Corbell: Call it Whitlamesque.

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