Page 4012 - Week 10 - Tuesday, 20 September 2011

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The Government acknowledges the interests of the CPSU and staff of the AMC and can assure them that staff safety will be a key factor in any decision the Government makes in regard to this matter.

Planning—Spence shops—petition No 123

The response read as follows:

I refer to Petition No 123 lodged by Ms Mary Porter AM, MLA and received by the Assembly on 29 June 2011. The petitioners draw the Assembly’s attention to their concerns about a proposed 7-Eleven shop at Spence, and the possible effect on existing automotive repair businesses and other small businesses at the Spence shops.

I am advised by the ACT Planning and Land Authority (ACTPLA) within the Environment and Sustainable Development Directorate that is has received a proposal for alterations to the existing service station to accommodate a 7-Eleven convenience shop. Further documentation has been requested from the proponent before the proposal can be formally lodged as a Development Application (DA).

Once a DA is lodged, it will be publicly notified in accordance with the Planning and Development Act 2007. Notification involves a notice in the Canberra Times, a sign on the land advising how representations may be made, and written notification to immediately adjoining neighbours of the subject land. Representations may be made by any member of the community who has a concern with the proposal. ACTPLA has the responsibility for assessing and determining DAs.

ACTPLA will undertake this assessment against the requirements of the Territory Plan, and will carefully consider representations made and any advice received from other government agencies and utilities. Concerned citizens should be advised to take the opportunity to express their concerns when the DA is publicly notified.

I trust that this information is of assistance to the Assembly.

MR DOSZPOT (Brindabella), by leave: Mr Speaker, I take great pleasure in supporting this petition on behalf of 621 parents and friends associated with the Weston preschool. I would like to put on the record that the minister for education, who graced us with his presence briefly here this morning, did not see fit to listen to what this position is about.

This petition is one driven by passion and frustration at a system that is driven by high-handedness and a serious lack of consideration and consultation. To familiarise the Assembly with the issue, as in every school year, and like preschools around Canberra, enrolments for the Weston campus of Arawang preschool opened in May this year. Like most parents, the parents of children in the Weston area considered their choices. For many in the Weston area, they chose to enrol in Weston preschool. As more than one parent has told me, “We based our decision on the reputation of the preschool, the Weston preschool community and research on surrounding schools.”

In August of this year parents received a letter from the Arawang primary school to advise them that the school principal and board had decided to change the mix and offer. Instead of two mainstream preschool classes at Weston preschool, the early

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