Page 3121 - Week 08 - Thursday, 25 June 2009

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extra $1.7 million in funding to ensure that these are processed more quickly. We also support the government’s proposals for a two-year moratorium on fees for delayed commercial developments.

There are a couple of recommendations about the website as part of the committee’s deliberations. ACTPLA has put more money into the website. I must admit I am a bit disappointed that these recommendations were not taken up by the government. Firstly, there is recommendation 121. It is quite reasonable to see on the website information about the waiting times for DAs.

Recommendation 122 is asking for an archive of DAs to be kept on the ACTPLA website. I must admit that is something I would find very useful and a number of my constituents would also. It is very frustrating to have known there was something up there and, if you do not grab it at the exact moment, then it is gone.

These days the cost of disk space is very cheap. I am sure that ACTPLA could afford the disk space to keep the DAs up on the website. I am sure that they are still there electronically somewhere. I would just like them to be electronically available to the public as well as to ACTPLA staff. If there are issues with how long, then maybe if it is only kept up for a couple of months, even that would make a big difference in terms of the public’s ability to know what is going on in our city.

Moving on to energy efficiency, I was glad to hear through the estimates process that ACTPLA will be starting a system for licensing and auditing energy efficiency rating assessors and, clearly, the Greens have been pushing for some time for the energy efficiency assessment process to be tightened, audited, licensed et cetera.

The committee also recommended that ACTPLA include an average energy efficiency rating for domestic and commercial buildings constructed each year as an accountability indicator. I was quite surprised to see the government’s hesitancy about this and their concern that they did not have the data. Given that all buildings have to reach a minimum star rating and it is part of the things that a building certifier has to know, I just cannot understand how ACTPLA, which is the authority which regulates this, says it does not have this data. What data does it have? I would really like to see this one looked at more.

Another one is solar orientation, and that is an issue which the Greens are very keen to see improved in building, planning and land release issues. The estimates committee recommended that ACTPLA ensure that solar orientation is a key criterion in estate plans. I was pleased the government agreed with it but disappointed to find that they agreed to it because they stated they were already doing it. I guess the main thing I would say is that, if they are already doing it, they need to do something better than what they are already doing. I get lots of emails from constituents about buildings which are simply not facing north; that just across the road from their building one is being built and, of the four elevations, north is the one that has the least windows; it is also the one, ironically, which would have the best views had they chosen to look in that direction.

I note also that you can legally have blocks laid out at one-star for solar rating and, looking at the estate layout DAs that I have looked at, these all tend to be of the

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