Page 5396 - Week 13 - Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

located in particular areas. For that reason, phase 1 of the strategy has commenced and the consultation phase will continue until 17 December this year.

Neighbouring property owners and occupiers have been contacted, to explain the proposed developments and to answer and listen to any concerns they have. Local community councils and residents associations are also being contacted, as are other groups—for example, sporting groups—that use adjacent ovals and other spaces. These are important discussions as we finalise the planning and detailed design for these new emergency services stations.

There will also be a series of community forums held in both Belconnen and Tuggeranong which members of the public can attend, to ask questions and get further information and of course to provide their feedback. This is, of course, in addition to any statutory consultation processes that may be required such as variations to the territory plan or development applications to allow the station relocation strategy to proceed.

Public housing—energy efficiency ratings

MS BRESNAN: My question is to the Minister for Community Services. Minister, yesterday you tabled the government’s costings of the Greens’ minimum housing standards bill in regard to public housing. Those costings acknowledge that 10 out of the 12,000 houses in the ACT public housing stock do not have energy efficiency ratings but assume that all unrated houses only have an EER of 2 or below. Minister, how reliable are the conclusions of this document, given that ACT Housing could only estimate the number of houses on an EER of 0, 1 and 2? Was it appropriate to use this data as an indication of costs involved with the bill given that the data was mostly based on guesswork?

MS BURCH: I thank Ms Bresnan for her question. We know that our housing stock is some of the oldest in the country; that is on any record. We have houses that are 20, 30, 40-plus years old. Northbourne Avenue, for example, I think is over half a century old. So it is not surprising that the EER ratings could be quite low on those properties.

As for costings, it is the responsibility of the directorate that is about to be impacted by a bill that is brought into this place that demands minimum standards that will have a financial impact to undertake that work. I would ask Ms Bresnan, if she thinks that those figures are flawed, if perhaps she would like to table for the benefit of community information the costings behind the Greens’ bill.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Bresnan, a supplementary.

MS BRESNAN: Minister, given that this document acknowledges that at least half of ACT Housing has an energy rating of one star or below and that no heating is provided in at least half of ACT Housing properties, how are these houses being heated and what action will the government take to remedy this situation?

MS BURCH: We have in place a $4 million a year energy upgrade and refurbishment program for public housing properties. I think that is a clear commitment by this

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video