Page 955 - Week 03 - Wednesday, 25 February 2009

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It totally blows out of the water the argument that it is about the global financial crisis. The reality is that banks are still lending for housing in the ACT. They are lending for housing and they are offering finance to some of the very individuals who qualify for the scheme and have signed up to the scheme. But they will not offer it for a dud scheme; that is the problem.

It is disingenuous for this government to try and hide behind global financial difficulties and claim that that is the problem with their system. It was a dud when they put it to the Assembly; that is why we voted against it at the time. It is a dud for a number of reasons, most important of which is that lenders are unlikely to want to lend with so little security. It is a dud because, if the lenders do end up lending, we can guarantee that there will be more onerous conditions than on a normal loan and we will see people go backwards. As they see the value of that asset go backwards and they see the value of the land that they do not own go up and get further out of their reach, they will get into trouble. They will not get the same kind of security that we expect for people who purchase a house and land package.

One of the wonderful things about homeownership in Australia over many years around the world has been the security that it offers. This does not offer security. It offers false hope. It is a dud scheme and the government’s pathetic defence that we will hear more and more—that it has got nothing to do with them, that it is someone else’s fault, that it is global conditions—does not stack up. Banks are still lending for houses in the ACT. They are offering finance to these people in the ACT. They are not offering it under the land rent scheme because the land rent scheme is a dud.

We will not be supporting the amendment. We do not believe it covers what it should. We believe what we have put to the government is very reasonable. We are surprised, really, at the changed approach of the Greens to the inquiry. But we will not be supporting their amendment, which significantly changes the motion. We are disappointed that they will not be supporting our call for an inquiry. We believe it should be inquired into. It appears that the Labor Party and the Greens are going to get together to squash any attempt to inquire into this, get some outcomes and get some answers for these people who have been led astray by Jon Stanhope and his government.

Question put:

That Ms Bresnan’s amendment be agreed to.

The Assembly voted—

Ayes 10

Noes 5

Mr Barr

Ms Hunter

Mr Coe

Ms Bresnan

Ms Le Couteur

Mrs Dunne

Ms Burch

Ms Porter

Mr Hanson

Mr Corbell

Mr Rattenbury

Mr Seselja

Mr Hargreaves

Mr Stanhope

Mr Smyth

Question so resolved in the affirmative.

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