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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 08 Hansard (Thursday, 25 June 2009) . . Page.. 3128 ..

the planning area include an extra $9.7 million, including nearly $8 million over four years, to place more inspectors in the field and to provide faster turnaround times on building inspections and, as a result, faster issuing of completion certificates.

On the capital side, there is a significant investment, $74 million, in Gungahlin and the Molonglo Valley over the next three years to assist the government in its land supply strategy.

This includes $21 million for the extension of Clarrie Hermes Drive from Kelleway Avenue, Nicholls, to the Barton Highway, which will provide arterial road access for the new residential areas in north Gungahlin. There is $13.5 million to extend Mulligans Flat Road from Jessie Street in Forde to the New South Wales border and to build three water quality control ponds at Forde. There is $11 million for the construction of the Bonner western distributor and sewer extension. The new road will provide access to the western side of Bonner and the eastern side of the proposed suburb of Jacka. There is $7 million for the extension of Wells Station Drive from Turtle Rock Street, Harrison, to Horse Park Drive to provide access to the southern section of Harrison and the proposed suburb of Kenny.

There is $9 million for the extension of Sandford Street from Flemington Road, Mitchell to Antill Street, Watson, to provide arterial road access into the eastern section of Mitchell and the southern section of the suburb of Kenny. And there is $12.5 million over two years towards the construction of John Gorton Drive, a new arterial road funded in the 2008-09 budget to provide the trunk access to what will be Canberra’s newest suburbs of Wright and Coombs in the Molonglo Valley. As is standard practice, these road projects are project managed by Territory and Municipal Services on behalf of the Planning and Land Authority.

Other areas of focus in the planning budget this year, as other members have mentioned, include the tune-up Canberra program, the support for the additional commercial and industrial land release programs through the commercial and industrial land supply strategy, support for the implementation of a range of intergovernmental agreements, the nation building and jobs plan task force and some important but perhaps not high-profile investments in record management system software upgrades.

One area that I know has been the subject of some community debate is how ACTPLA engages with the community. This is an area of some difficulty for the Planning and Land Authority. It is often wrongly accused of being the proponent of a particular project when all it is doing is its statutory role of notifying the public that it has received a development application from what is usually a private sector proponent but on occasion is the government.

ACTPLA is perhaps unfairly maligned at times in this area. Nonetheless, we believed that it was important to strengthen the authority’s capacity to engage early with the community, particularly around the notification process—so having larger signs. I note that during the estimates process there was pretty broad approval for the new notification processes that the Planning and Land Authority is undertaking with larger signs that are sturdier and are less likely to be vandalised. It is a small measure, but it

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