Page 3237 - Week 08 - Tuesday, 16 August 2011

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Planning—chief planning executive

MS LE COUTEUR: My question is to the Minister for Planning and it concerns the role of the chief planning executive. Given that Mr Savery has a contract to be the chief planning executive until 14 September 2013 but that Mr Papps has also been given a contract to be acting chief planning executive when Mr Savery is absent from the workplace, what is the role of the chief planning executive—that is, Mr Savery—at present and how does he fit into the new ACTPLA and ESD organisational structure?

MR CORBELL: Mr Speaker, I can advise the Assembly that Mr Savery is in negotiations with the territory in relation to his future role. Mr Savery has provided a sterling and a very high level of professionalism in his role as chief planning executive and is a man that I have—

Members interjecting—

MR SPEAKER: Order! Members, let us hear the answer from the minister, thank you.

MR CORBELL: He is a man that I have considerable regard to and for. Mr Savery is currently in discussions with the head of the ACT public service in relation to his ongoing role. I will take further advice on the exact status of those discussions and advise the Assembly.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Le Couteur, a supplementary question.

MS LE COUTEUR: Given that Mr Papps’s contract as acting chief planning executive ends on 1 January 2012, why is this and what is intended to happen after this date?

MR CORBELL: It is normal for there to be arrangements put in place for an acting chief planning executive for periods when the chief planning executive is absent for personal or other reasons. Previously, the acting chief planning executive was one of the senior executive officers of the ACT Planning and Land Authority. With the establishment of the new Environment and Sustainable Development Directorate, the government deemed it appropriate, in periods when the chief planning executive was not available, for that function to be performed by the director-general of the Environment and Sustainable Development Directorate.

MS HUNTER: A supplementary.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Hunter.

MS HUNTER: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, has the government addressed issues around the perceived politicisation of development assessment being undertaken by an impartial, apolitical planning agency when the chief planning executive is also the director-general?

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