Page 3439 - Week 08 - Wednesday, 17 August 2011

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Mr Smyth: Mr Speaker, I seek leave to suspend so much of standing orders as would prevent Mr Coe from making his closing address.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Smyth, there is no closure motion on this vote, so Mr Coe is free to speak without the suspension of standing orders if he so wishes.

MR COE (Ginninderra) (6.32): Mr Speaker, I will be conscious that the guillotine may fall over me at any moment now; I will keep my eyes peeled for a member who is quick to stand up to shoot me down.

If you look at this motion, you wonder what part they disagree with. I really do challenge each member here to look at what I note and to look at what I call upon the government to do. Is anyone actually doubting the lack of adequate car parking? Is anyone actually doubting the dramatic increase in the cost of parking? Is anyone doubting that the draft ACT parking strategy proposes a limited net increase of parking spaces? Is anyone doubting that the ACT government’s spatial planning states a strategy of increasing the price of parking to deter Canberrans from driving? Does anybody doubt that?

And does anyone not agree with calling on the government to recognise that cars are the principal means of transport for most Canberrans, especially those in outer suburbs? Does anyone not want to call upon the government to ensure that master plans include adequate parking? Does anyone not want the government to consider the construction of multistorey parking stations in town centres by working with private providers? And does anyone here not want the government to update and finalise the ACT parking strategy?

To vote no to this motion will be in effect to say that you disagree with each of those statements.

Parking is probably the number one issue which I get as a member of this place. If I go to shopping centres, by far and away the most common thing that people raise when they come up to me to speak to me as a local member is parking.

It is interesting that the Greens never miss an opportunity to talk about peak oil and climate change. It is a chestnut which is just so manoeuvrable for them. Peak oil can be applied to anything—absolutely anything. It is a little gem. It is a little blank cheque. It is a blank cheque that they can use whenever they want on anything at all and bring it back to their core socialist ideology. It can always come back to that. Peak oil to them is a blank cheque for them to talk about their ideology and just how much they hate the free market—just how much they hate what we actually stand for as a community.

It is interesting that they should talk about modal shift and how people should be catching a bus. But how many of the five MLAs that live in the inner north catch a bus on a daily basis? If people in the inner north who work in the city—with one bus to get from their home to their workplace—are not getting a bus, what hope is there for the people in the outer suburbs of Canberra? There are five MLAs that live in the inner north, one short bus journey away, and they do not get a bus to work and back.

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