Page 3489 - Week 11 - Thursday, 19 September 2013

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MR CORBELL: I have concluded my answer, Madam Speaker.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Minister, what are the benefits of a structured planning system for Canberra?

MADAM SPEAKER: It is marginally in order, I think. Mr Corbell.

MR CORBELL: We do not operate like a local council in New South Wales or in Victoria. We do not operate like councils in Victoria that are being shut down. We do not operate like councils in New South Wales where corruption has been found. The reason—

Opposition members interjecting—

MADAM SPEAKER: Order, members!

MR CORBELL: The reason we do not is that we do not allow our political representatives, through this Legislative Assembly, to determine what development should and should not take place. Instead, we have a statutory framework where a planning and development authority assesses development applications. It either determines them itself or refers them to the minister with their expert opinion, and the minister is held accountable in this place for those decisions.

We saw yesterday how the Liberal Party thinks development assessments should happen in this town. We heard first of all in the morning Mr Coe and Mr Wall saying, “We do not have a problem with call-in powers as long as you refuse this development at Uriarra.” Then we had Mr Coe stand up in the afternoon and say, “Canberra is closed for business. Isn’t this terrible?”

So in the morning they are saying, “Do not approve a development where a development application has not been lodged.” Then in the afternoon they say, “Shock, horror! Canberra is closed for business.” Madam Speaker, the only people who are closing Canberra for business and not adhering to due process and a fair and equitable development assessment process are those opposite.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Minister, will you ensure that ACT home owners receive direct appropriate notice about any solar farm proposals to be built near their homes?

MR CORBELL: The development application and notification process, whether it be for a solar farm or any other development, will be notified in accordance with the provisions set out in the Planning and Development Act.

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