Page 615 - Week 02 - Wednesday, 22 February 2012

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For Canberra families the choice of their childcare is a very personal one, so Labor will not be pursuing this proposal. Instead we are equipping parents with the vital information they need to make informed decisions about childcare. At the end of this year families will be able to view their centre’s quality rating on the mychild website, together with other useful information. I think what the ACT Labor government is doing is supporting Canberra families, supporting the sector and supporting community services far beyond anything that has been uttered by those opposite.

MR COE: Supplementary question, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Coe.

MR COE: Minister, why are you an advocate for a common waiting list in public housing but not in childcare?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Coe for his question. A mandated, centralised waiting list is a burden on the services. That requires them to log on each and every night and update the number of children in and out of their services. This is private sector, private businesses that you are asking us to burden with something that is unnecessary and something that they do not want to do.

A centralised waiting list for housing on the other hand ensures that there is common assessment, common intake, common referrals across all social and public housing. It ensures fair and equitable use of the public’s resources.

Planning—draft variation 306

MS LE COUTEUR: My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development and is in relation to draft variations to the territory plan. Minister, the development of draft variation 306 has been a long process, including originally draft variations 301 and 303 which were put out for public consultation and then amalgamated into 306 which was consulted on in 2011. Part of draft variation 306 was given interim effect.

Minister, given that this Assembly has only eight months left to run and noting the complexity of the variation, will you be referring draft variation 306 to the planning committee in time for the committee to report to this Assembly?

MR CORBELL: Obviously a decision on whether or not to refer draft variation 306 will depend on the outcome of the public consultation process. I am yet to receive the planning authority’s public consultation report which will outline all of the matters which I will need to have regard to in deciding whether or not the proposed variation is, indeed, appropriate and should progress to a next stage.

However, speaking hypothetically, given the complexity of 306, I think it would be desirable for the matter to be referred to the Assembly’s planning committee. Whether or not that is feasible given the approach of the 2012 election is a matter, I guess, which is yet to be determined.

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