Page 1091 - Week 03 - Thursday, 26 February 2009

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position adopted by the Greens yesterday, through the development of regulations, that will now be able to be completed largely through an exempt development category. That is an important advance. I take this opportunity to put on the record my thanks to the Greens for coming to yesterday’s briefing with an open mind. It was good to see.

Mr Hanson: A bit more humble today, Andrew.

MR BARR: In relation to Mr Hanson’s interjection, I will also take the opportunity to just put on the record the fact that the media release issued on 20 February by the Greens spokesperson on that particular issue did state at that time a Greens view that it was imprudent and unnecessary to go down the path the government went down. A matter of days later, following a briefing, it was no longer imprudent and unnecessary and was able to be supported in principle. I welcome that change. It is a pity that the Liberal Party were so late in the process. I understand that they might have snuck a comment into the Canberra Times at the end, but we are still yet to see a substantive position on the commonwealth’s education package and whether they support that and whether, in fact, the ACT Liberals will seek to disallow those regulations when they are introduced and when the Assembly has the prospect of disallowance in future sittings.

Economy—stimulus package

MS BURCH: My question is to the Treasurer. Can the Treasurer update the Assembly on the benefits for the ACT of the federal government’s $42 billion stimulus package?

MS GALLAGHER: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Thank you, Ms Burch, for the question. It goes to undertakings that I had given the Assembly previously on working through the detail of the federal government’s stimulus package once it had passed the parliament.

Opposition members interjecting—

MS GALLAGHER: The Liberal opposition, as we have come to expect, do not want to hear any of this. They just want to snipe on the sidelines.

In several answers to questions, I think in the first sitting week in February, I made it clear that some of the impacts of the government’s $42 billion stimulus package were yet to be worked through, one of those being that the legislation had not yet passed parliament. I undertook to get back to the Assembly when some of that detail had been worked through. Today I am pleased to be able to provide the Assembly with some information.

Of the $42 billion stimulus package, the ACT will see a direct expenditure in the order of $350 million. In addition, ACT households will receive in the order of $190 million in various tax bonuses and energy efficient home upgrades of around $28 million. Local small businesses will benefit by $32 million in tax breaks.

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