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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 3 Hansard (23 October) . . Page.. 4021 ..



I have talked with the relevant stakeholders, both the department and the lessees, and can understand some of the frustration with this decision by government. I am particularly concerned about the haphazard way that it has been implemented, with some blocks in the Molonglo Valley being given 99-year leases while others have been given 20-year leases, depending only on when they agreed to change over their lease or when it was due.

This system arbitrarily assigns the right to compensation for the resumption of land by the territory to some landholders but denies it to others. Where is the equity in that? I do appreciate and understand that, if the territory does ultimately decide to resume this land for development, there will be additional cost. I repeat again that this decision has not yet been made.

There is only so far into the future we can predict about land use and it is quite possible that there will be other rural leases that we may wish to resume for development. However, we should not deny rural leaseholders the certainty to invest in their properties for this reason and change all their leases. For the same reason and because it pre-empts a decision on the future of the use of the Molonglo Valley, we should not be changing the policy for some of the leases in the Molonglo Valley at this time.

Perhaps that is something we should be looking at, as I have said, in a comprehensive way when we have the information back from the spatial planning process and we have a better vision of what it is we want to do across the territory. The taking of two leases out of the entire 190 rural leases across the territory at this point in time through this disallowable instrument is, I believe, a poor planning process and an inequitable situation.

Debate (on motion by Ms Tucker ) adjourned to the next sitting.

Mrs Dunne

: Mr Speaker, I seek clarification on whether this item will have to be dealt with on the first Tuesday of the next sitting week, otherwise it will expire. Is that the understanding of the Assembly?


: I am not aware of the timing.


(Minister for Health and Minister for Planning): I seek leave to make a brief statement, Mr Speaker.

Leave granted.


: Mr Speaker, given that members have indicated their desire to adjourn debate on this matter for today to consider issues further, the government will need to bring this matter on for debate during executive business on the next sitting Tuesday. The government is prepared to do that, rather than allowing the automatic disallowance to take effect.

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