Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 13 Hansard (26 November) . . Page.. 4771 ..
MRS DUNNE (continuing):
the government feels that even on private members day it has to try to lord it over everyone and have its own way.
If the Chief Minister had come and said, "Look, Mrs Dunne, how about we put in a couple of paragraphs that acknowledge the work that has already been done,"that would be fine. I would have no problem with it, and I do not think that anyone in this place would have a problem with that. But we have this sort of pre-emptive approach every private members day-and I think that it has happened the last three private members days-where especially the Chief Minister comes in with an amendment which says "omit all words after"with a view to inserting other words.
It is, as Mrs Burke says, a pretty churlish approach. Mr Cornwell has made the point that none of the actual words that Mr Stanhope proposes to put in the motion are exceptional or offensive, and in fact we would support those. But what we do not support is removing all of the substantive items from the opposition's motion, which actually asks the government to take more action.
It is fine to recognise progress so far, but what we are calling on the government to do in this motion-which has been on the notice paper since June and which was foreshadowed some time before that-is, now that we have made a commitment to go down this path of reducing the bag litter by 75 per cent by 2005, not to just leave it to the Retailers Association but to create an environment in the ACT where we can actually achieve those targets. That is what this is about. It is calling upon the government to facilitate a community action to make these targets work. It is not sufficient just to set the targets and sit back and then, if the Retailers Association fails, to blame it.
We are trying to create is a cooperative spirit in this territory so that we can make some achievements for the environment. So, while I am quite comfortable with the words in Mr Stanhope's proposed paragraph 2, I think that it is not in the spirit of the motion to remove all the substantive points in the original motion, which were originally numbered 2, 3, 4 and 5. That is why I propose to add to Mr Stanhope's motion, at the end of his substantive paragraph, the words that he proposes to delete.
I think this is the third time in this place that we have had to go down this path. I hope that soon the government will learn that members of the opposition-and I hope the members of the crossbenches-will not be cowed by their tactics, and that they will actually take a more consultative approach, to coming up with an environmental solution in this case, rather than just trying to beat down any opposition. Working cooperatively does not seem to be in the lexicon of the Chief Minister, but I would encourage him to try to do so in future.
I move the following amendment to Mr Stanhope's amendment:
After "join the scheme"add:
"(3) calls on the Government to ensure that there are plastic bag recycling drop off points at all major town centres across Canberra;
(4) calls on the Government to embark on an education and awareness campaign promoting the benefits of reducing, reusing and recycling plastic bags;
(5) calls on the Government to work with business and encourage more consumer choice for carrying goods bought, i.e. allowing choice of plastic bag, calico