Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 08 Hansard (Wednesday, 6 August 2008) . . Page.. 2903 ..
years to be reworked and come back. There was a motor vehicle tax: in May 2006 the Stanhope government sought to impose stamp duty on motor vehicles based on the list price of a vehicle. Following fierce opposition from the opposition and the industry, the government became aware of the stupidity of this proposition and it was withdrawn.
Then we have the utility land use permit. In June 2006, the Stanhope government sought to impose a utility land use permit as a charge on utilities where they occupied unleased territory land. Following concerns about how this tax would be applied, this permit proposal became a network facilities tax, after consulting with utility companies, such that it would impose a lower administrative burden for the utilities. So we have a backflip characterised as consultation. Where have we heard that before?
Then we have the fiasco with the outdoor cafe fees. In November 2007—it is great to see the minister here—
Mr Corbell: Point of order, Mr Speaker.
MR SPEAKER: Mr Corbell.
MR SMYTH: we had the embarrassing error in the calculation—
MR SPEAKER: Stop the clock, please.
Mr Corbell: This bill is not about a whole range of other taxes and charges; it is about the Rates (Fire and Emergency Services Levy Repeal) Amendment Bill. Mr Speaker, you have already drawn Mr Smyth’s attention to the fact that he must remain relevant in this debate on the matter before the Assembly, which is the proposed repeal of the Rates (Fire and Emergency Services Levy Repeal) Amendment Bill. He has ignored your direction, Mr Speaker, and I ask you again to require him to remain relevant.
MR SPEAKER: Remain relevant, Mr Smyth.
MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I am entirely relevant; it is a bill about repealing a tax. But I will read it again, because obviously Mr Corbell missed it.
MR SPEAKER: It is a bill about the repeal of the fire and emergency services levy, Mr Smyth.
MR SMYTH: I just spoke about this. Let me read it again. Obviously Mr Corbell has problems with his hearing, so I will read it again. Let me read it more slowly, perhaps. Perhaps I should read more slowly for Mr Corbell. Let me read an extract from the Property Council of Australia submission re the fire and emergency services levy. Let me read again. In some cases in the ACT, Mr Corbell, you and your cabinet have increased rates on commercial property by 60 per cent, partly as a result of the imposition of the fire and emergency services levy.
Mr Corbell: At least you are being relevant now.