Page 2236 - Week 06 - Friday, 27 June 2008

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From the point of view of releasing Industrial land onto the market in the near future, the LDA and CMD prefer the site at part Block 18 Section 23 because it is not immediately earmarked for release. By way of contrast, Block 7 section 21 is currently being prepared for sale in the near future by the LDA—

something that was always admitted and indeed it was the LDA’s initial position—

to meet the current high demand for industrial estates in Hume;

That is a most reasonable and logical position for the departments and the agencies to take. The brief then goes on to say—and this really is the conclusion and the advice and the briefing that I received that completely debunks the nonsense that has been propagated by the Liberal Party and dispersed by others:

therefore, if this site—

namely, the so-called preferred Hume site—

becomes the final one offered to ActewAGL, there would be an urgent need to identify other replacement land for release. The broadacre site has the merit that it would not utilise Industrial land at all (a power station/major utility installation is a permissible use on the Broadacre zoning).

So there we have it, in the brief to me covering the letter of 9 July, officials advising me that all blocks were to be considered, all blocks were available; if the Hume block were to become the site ultimately selected by ActewAGL then in this briefing explicitly to me, “Well, we’ll have to go back to taws. We’ll have to go back to first base. We’ll have to redo the work that we’ve done to get that industrial land ready for release to the market on another site.” There it is for all the world to see in black and white. You had it, you ignored it, you never related to it, because of course you wanted to be selective in your treatment of documents, so your entire case relied on documents that predated the brief and the letter that we refer to here in this particular discussion—because this letter blew every one of your allegations and your puerile claims out of the water, completely out of the water. That is why you have never admitted the existence of this letter or brief—because it debunked every one of your idle accusations.

In relation to the final decision, the final decision was a decision of cabinet, based on advice, of course, in relation to most particularly the desire of ActewAGL for the site which they ultimately chose and selected; the decision of the consortium of this very significant multinational company that I hope most sincerely has not been frightened out of the ACT by the antics of the Liberal Party, the party that pretends it is interested in broadening the economic base but the party that has done everything through an outrageous scare campaign to ensure that this major $2 billion project is not successful here within the territory.

MR SPEAKER: Is there a supplementary question?

MR SMYTH: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Chief Minister, will you table that advice in the Assembly by close of business this afternoon? If not, why not?

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