Page 3309 - Week 10 - Friday, 26 August 2005

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Ayes 14

Noes 1

Mr Berry

Ms Porter

Dr Foskey

Mrs Burke

Mr Pratt

Mr Corbell

Mr Quinlan

Mrs Dunne

Mr Seselja

Ms Gallagher

Mr Smyth

Mr Gentleman

Mr Stanhope

Ms MacDonald

Mr Stefaniak

Question so resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to.

Land (Planning and Environment) Amendment Bill 2005

Debate resumed from 23 June 2005, on motion by Mr Corbell:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR SESELJA (Molonglo) (10.23): The opposition will be supporting this fairly simple bill. The purpose of the amendment is to provide for a statutory definition of “concessional lease”. We are told that that is a critical first step to clarifying and simplifying the administration of concessional leases.

I have had a briefing from officers of ACTPLA and I would like to put on record my thanks for their time in providing that briefing. I asked them some questions about the necessity of it, about whether it could cause any confusion by defining something that has not been clearly defined in primary legislation up to now. They have assured me that they do not see any issues with that and that this will be a good step in simplifying the way concessional leases work. To that end I take their assurances on board. We are happy to support the bill.

DR FOSKEY (Molonglo) (10.24): I think all the Liberals have lost the bet now anyway, so I am going to give a speech. I will be supporting this bill, which introduces a definition of “concessional lease” into the Land (Planning and Environment) Act. I would like to raise a few points of concern and would appreciate some response at the conclusion of the debate. Firstly, I am aware that the concessional leases review was concluded around July last year and that the government has had the review report for more than a year. Given that this bill is the only outcome from that review to date, no-one could say that we are rushing this process. We are now waiting, I understand, for the government’s response to that review, including a number of policy decisions. It might be a sign of open government process to make that final review document publicly available as well.

As we are all aware, a more significant planning system reform project has been launched which, in terms of scale of potential impact, dwarfs this analysis of concessional leases. Already my perceptions of that system review and the feedback I am getting from a range of professional and community sources is that the project is particularly opaque and complex and that much of the work, of which planning system

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