Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 08 Hansard (Wednesday, 24 June 2009) . . Page.. 2854 ..
many respects seeks to get the government to commit to a debate on a matter that is yet to come before the Assembly for debate. So I have some difficulty in engaging in this debate ahead of the government formulating its response to Ms Le Couteur’s bill. What I would say is that the government has signed up, through the Ministerial Council on Energy, to a program to phase out electric hot water systems.
There are a range of issues associated with the timing of that phase-out that are of particular importance and which the government will need to consider further. For example, as I understand it, Ms Le Couteur’s bill is proposed to take effect within the next three to four months. If that is the case then it raises some very real and legitimate questions for existing retailers of hot water systems and what they will do with orders already placed or with stock they already hold. If you were to adopt Ms Le Couteur’s time frame they would not be able to make any arrangements to make a transition from their existing stock to new stock or, indeed, new products. These are legitimate issues which the Ministerial Council on Energy is progressing and having regard to. It is a matter that Ms Le Couteur’s bill does not have regard to.
There are clear efficiencies to be achieved in phasing out electric hot water systems. There is no doubt about that. The issue is the timing of that change, the impacts on the retailers and the impacts on consumers. Those are matters that the government will have foremost in its mind when it looks at the implementation of such a measure. I regret to say I do not believe it is a matter that has been fully dealt with by Ms Le Couteur’s proposal to date.
MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, who will be providing mortgage insurance for borrowers under the land rent scheme?
MR STANHOPE: The issue of mortgage insurance is an issue for the lender—CPS. I would suggest that you might wish to approach CPS in relation to that. But some preliminary advice I have—this is an issue for CPS and I cannot be held to this—is that I have an understanding that as a result of the final assessment or conclusions of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority in relation to this product, CPS may have adopted a view that the product is so secure, so safe, that mortgage insurance is not necessary. But I will seek to confirm that from CPS. There may not be any.
Of course, in the context of all the shock, horror attempts by the Liberal Party to scuttle this—
Mr Hanson: If you have less than 20 per cent, you have to find your own insurance.
MR STANHOPE: No, that is not how it works. That is actually one of the other issues in relation to this deposit arrangement. It is any arrangement that some lenders make. I think there is a whole range of positions that different lenders put. I understand that there are some lenders currently not particularly comfortable about accepting the first-homebuyers boost as a sole contribution to a deposit, and I can understand that.