Page 3638 - Week 12 - Tuesday, 22 October 2013
issues raised by proponents as well as the submitters and witnesses to the inquiry. Our recommendations include that the development should proceed but that the concerns of residents and submitters should be considered.
It was clear during the inquiry that the vast majority thought the development should proceed and that the Cooyong area needs renewal. But there were concerns about proposed heights, community facilities and traffic. I am aware that the reporting period has lapsed but would ask the minister to consider the concerns raised during our inquiry when making his decisions.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank our secretary, Margie Morrison, our former secretary, Veronica Strkalj, the secretariat support group, all stakeholders, government officials and, of course, those providing submissions to the inquiry.
MR COE (Ginninderra) (5.13): It is disappointing that it was not possible for the committee to agree on a report and therefore that a special report was required. Of course, the reason we got into this situation was that in the last sitting the chair of the committee presented a document which he claimed had the support of the committee. He claimed it was a committee report when, of course, it had not been endorsed by the committee in the same way as every other committee report in the history of the ACT Assembly had been endorsed—that is, by a motion of affirmation.
It meant that committee resources were tied up. It meant that the Speaker’s office, the Clerk’s office and others were involved in having to provide advice, which I think most people would have thought obvious—that a report should be put to a meeting and a positive motion should be put forward and agreed upon before a document could be said to be representative of the committee.
I will be writing to the Speaker and to the Clerk to ask about the legitimacy of this report because it seems somewhat interesting that somebody could dissent from a special report, especially given that the special report was actually moved by the authors of a dissenting report. We have a situation whereby Mr Gentleman and Dr Bourke both have a special report but then also put in a dissenting report. I am not quite sure how this all stacks up. Once again, we might be in a situation where the validity of this document is questionable all because some people—it seems Dr Bourke and Mr Gentleman—are trying to be a little bit tricky.
As for the core issue, I have already had comments published in an earlier document which expresses the views of the opposition. We have serious concerns with what the government is proposing. I think there are concerns about the height, which are quite valid. I think there are concerns about the government as a property developer, which are serious concerns, and there are also views that were expressed about the risk of the government, yet again, engaging in the high-density public housing proposal.
So the opposition has put forward three alternatives which we hope would be considered by the government. That complete body of work done by Mr Wall and me is available in the earlier document published by Mr Gentleman in September.