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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 03 Hansard (Tuesday, 24 February 2009) . . Page.. 852 ..

MR STANHOPE: Yes. That is very perceptive of you, Mr Speaker. I was going to the context and the Speaker understood I was going to the context. I am sure actually that the Liberal Party understands I was going to the context, but it is not a particular context that they want to go to, namely, their outrageous, spendthrift and reckless election promises.

Mr Hanson: Mr Speaker, he is continuing to—

MR SPEAKER: Mr Stanhope, hold on, please.

MR STANHOPE: It was context. I was just rounding off that part of my answer.

MR SPEAKER: All right.

MR STANHOPE: Certainly there has been a change in attitude from some of those with whom we, the government, have been in discussions. I think in relation to the issue, it is important nevertheless to understand the role of government. We have proposed a scheme. We bring essentially to that scheme our goodwill, our energy, our innovative and creative capacity and access to land. We are not bankers. We are not lenders. We are not a financial institution.

What we have done is bring a major proposal to deal with the issue of affordability, most particularly for that group within our community most particularly cut from home ownership—young working families with young children on household incomes of less than $75,000 a year. We are proudly seeking to do something about their capacity, the capacity of those young families, to access home ownership.

I am proud of it. I will not resile from it. I will continue to strive and we, as a government, will continue to negotiate with the banking and financial and lending sector, as we do. We are not going to give up on this just because the Liberal Party, in concert with a fairly negative attitude by the Canberra Times, do not believe it is a scheme that should be pursued.

We are not going to give up. We are going to continue. Hopefully, through our involvement, we are going to find a lending product that will allow young working Canberra families with incomes of less than $75,000—a group of potential home owners, dreaming or aspiring home owners that the Liberal Party prefers to abandon.

At the end of the day that is what it comes down to. We would much prefer, in relation to this and other issues, to try and fail than to adopt the attitude of the Liberal Party and not try at all. What is the Liberal Party’s alternative to finding or breaking through—

Opposition members interjecting—

MR STANHOPE: The alternative for families earning less than $75,000 is to reduce stamp duty. That is not the issue in relation to capacity to pay a mortgage. Here we have the mantra straight from Mrs Dunne: we would have just abolished stamp duty and that would have solved the problem. Rubbish, absolute utter rubbish!

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