Page 4941 - Week 13 - Thursday, 12 November 2009

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virtually any inquiry we would have. If we were to accept the thrust of Ms Hunter’s argument, we would not have inquiries into very much because there is always greater expertise somewhere outside. That is why we bring them in. But, in the end, we are responsible. We are the ones who are answerable; we are the ones who can be voted out; and we are the ones who are there to represent the people of the ACT, to represent taxpayers, to ensure that they are protected.

As much as the government do not like it, it is our job to scrutinise them, and when they are comfortable with the scrutiny, you always have to suspect that the scrutiny is not as strong as it should be. We saw it when they were a majority government. They shut down scrutiny at every possible turn and they avoided it like the plague. Yet we are again seeing them finding ways of going for a lesser form of scrutiny. If they are comfortable with it, we believe harder questions need to be answered, and those are questions we will continue to pursue with vigour.

Question put:

That Mr Seselja’s motion be agreed to.

The Assembly voted—

Ayes 4

Noes 9

Mr Doszpot

Mr Barr

Ms Hunter

Mrs Dunne

Ms Bresnan

Ms Le Couteur

Mr Hanson

Ms Burch

Mr Rattenbury

Mr Seselja

Mr Corbell

Mr Stanhope

Ms Gallagher

Question so resolved in the negative.

Planning and Development Amendment Bill 2009

Statement by minister

MR BARR (Molonglo—Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Children and Young People, Minister for Planning and Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation), by leave: I would like to inform members of the status of the current exposure draft of this government bill.

On 28 October this year, the government released an exposure draft of the Planning and Development Amendment Bill 2009 (No 2) for public comment. The bill is available for comment until 26 November 2009. This bill makes a number of modifications to the Planning and Development Act 2007 which, for the most part, are of a technical or minor nature, including amendments for consistency and clarity. In addition, the bill makes a number of relatively minor policy adjustments.

The Planning and Development Act commenced on 31 March 2008 and put in place national leading practice for the assessment of development applications. The government has been unambiguous in its commitment to reforming the ACT’s planning and land administration system to make it simpler, faster and more effective.

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