Page 1686 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 8 May 2013

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Mr Rattenbury: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I think the observation you make is a fair one in terms of wanting maximum certainty. In light of that, I am agreeable, if other members are happy to provide leave, that we perhaps vote on Mr Wall’s motion. I am then happy to move my amendment as a subsequent motion, if that is an agreeable way forward. I might suggest to you, Madam Speaker, with your indulgence, that this might be a matter for a ruling on which you may come back to the Assembly at a later point in time for the sake of clarity for the future.

MADAM SPEAKER: Thank you. I take the points that all members have made. In response to Mr Corbell, I do not feel that I should be in a position where I have to discern, short of a formal vote in this circumstance, because the formal vote could result in me having to notify the parliamentary counsel that this matter has been disallowed. I do not feel that I should have to discern that from this case.

The only precedent I can find at this stage is the matter that Ms Le Couteur moved in the last Assembly to disallow the regulations in relation to Kingston foreshore. There was an amendment that changed a definition within that subordinate legislation rather than an amendment which, while it relates to this draft variation, does not amend it. It actually does other things.

I have made it very clear that I would like the opportunity to look at the precedents and come back with a more formal and longstanding ruling. But I think in this instance I would rather that we go down the path that I rule this amendment out of order in this circumstance, but that we agree that we will entertain, by leave, Mr Rattenbury moving this as a motion at the end of the debate. On that basis, the amendment is out of order and the question now is that the motion be agreed to. Mr Corbell, to conclude your comments.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations and Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development), by leave: I thank you, Madam Speaker, and I thank members for their indulgence. To conclude my comments, the development of the solar access provisions was not policy on the run, as has been asserted by some sections of industry. Considerable research was undertaken with consideration given to the impact changes would have on the building industry.

It is not denied that the introduction of the new solar envelope will result in changes to the design of homes, particularly in greenfield areas. But this is not an unintended consequence; it is a deliberate decision so that we can improve the solar access of residences to address serious issues of energy consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, climate change, and the cost of heating and cooling residences.

In future greenfield estates the solar envelope provision will work alongside the compliance tables to ensure new compact and mid-sized blocks are of sufficient size with an orientation to enable a suitably sized dwelling to be constructed on it and one that does not adversely impact the solar access of the neighbouring blocks. It is worth noting that the new solar fence provision does not apply to existing compact or mid-sized blocks, except for those in the new Molonglo division.

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