Page 4293 - Week 14 - Wednesday, 27 November 2013
where a complaint is made or an inquiry is received Roads ACT engages with the situation. Basically, as I said, for the smallest displays generally there is no involvement from the government. However, if a display becomes so large that it meets the special event definition under the Roads ACT rules, that is where the government works with a householder to develop a temporary traffic management plan. That may include measures such as making a street one way so that traffic can flow safely through the street and so that other neighbours might be able to access their households through the course of a busy evening.
They are the situations. There is not a specific cut-off point. There are particular definitions of what constitutes a special event. I am happy to go into that if members so desire.
MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Doszpot.
MR DOSZPOT: Minister, how many households decorated with Christmas lights were charged road taxes by this government in the last three years, and how much were they charged?
MR RATTENBURY: Do you mean special event fees, Mr Doszpot?
Mr Doszpot: I mean Christmas lights?
MR RATTENBURY: I will have to take that on notice for the last three years. What I can tell you is there are currently only two large Christmas light events where Roads ACT is assisting. One is in Kambah and the other is in Forrest. Roads ACT is liaising with the event organisers to identify the necessary management requirements to ensure safety at these locations.
Before there is too much excitement on the other side of the chamber, it is also very clear that government costs associated with Christmas light displays are generally absorbed by Roads ACT as a public service. As Mr Doszpot has rightly identified, the policy states that if costs exceed $2,000 Roads ACT may seek to recover part or all of the amount from the event organiser. This will be at the discretion of the Director of Roads ACT and will depend on particular circumstances.
MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mrs Jones.
MRS JONES: Minister, how many households decorated with lights have been charged so far this year and, if any, how much have they been charged? Has the Green Grinch stolen Christmas?
MR RATTENBURY: The sweet irony is that Mrs Jones is about to bring forward a motion—and she has already issued the press release—where she is demanding fences around playgrounds in the ACT to protect children and make them safe but, somehow, trying to ensure safety in busy neighbourhood streets where excessive traffic—