Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 09 Hansard (Wednesday, 25 August 2010) . . Page.. 3893 ..
outcomes and make sure that the investment that will go into a revitalised Kambah Village does deliver for the investors but, more importantly, delivers for the people of the ACT, particularly those residents in Kambah who rely on it as their primary place of shopping. I commend the motion to the house.
MR STANHOPE (Ginninderra—Chief Minister, Minister for Transport, Minister for Territory and Municipal Services, Minister for Business and Economic Development, Minister for Land and Property Services, Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs and Minister for the Arts and Heritage) (3.23): I think that none of us would disagree with the intent of Mr Smyth’s motion, which simply seeks an upgrade of the Kambah shops. It is a commendable ideal. However, I think that in any discussion around the motion we do need to put it and Mr Smyth’s proposal into the context of the 90 other shopping centres that exist in the ACT and for which the ACT government accepts some responsibility.
I think the starting position for each of us in relation to this particular motion and this particular debate is that, yes, of course, in an ideal world we would wish to perhaps prioritise each and every one of the shopping centres that we have. Mr Smyth’s motion today concentrates on Kambah and he has outlined why he believes that Kambah is particularly significant. In effect, what Mr Smyth has sought to outline and argue is why, of the 90 shopping centres—including, of course, all the group centres—Kambah should go to the head of the list, why Kambah should leapfrog a whole range of shopping centres throughout the whole of the ACT.
I think that is essentially what this motion is about. This is a request by Mr Smyth through this motion for the government to essentially re-jig the priority order of shopping centre upgrades. Another shopping centre in the ACT should be asked to give way to Kambah. That is what this motion is about. I do not have the list with me. I am sorry that I do not, otherwise I might have been able to give members some indication of which of the other group centres or shopping centres in the ACT will now, if the government were to pursue this particular approach, not receive the priority in the time frame that the government had proposed. That is what this motion is about—that Kambah jump the queue.
The ACT government does not believe that this is an appropriate way to determine the funding priorities of shopping centre upgrades. It is not about which particular shopping centre manages to attract the support of the majority of members of this place on a particular day. At the next private members’ day, will some other shopping centre perhaps get this same level of attention and treatment? Will we actually completely re-jig the priority in relation to shopping centre upgrades? Is that the precedent we are setting today, that in future government expenditure priorities are set by a political process? Does the Assembly decide “we think Kambah is more important than any one of the other group centres that you want to name or any one of the other shopping centres around the ACT”?
The ACT government seeks to respond to the need to continually upgrade shopping centres. There have been rolling programs of shopping centre upgrades probably since the beginning of self-government. As Mr Smyth says, we all accept that different shopping centres over time have each been upgraded by successive governments. But