Page 1116 - Week 04 - Wednesday, 25 March 2015

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We are not in a position to substantially reform our public housing system without a significant investment now. We cannot continue replacing stock at about half a per cent a year; it will take 200 years to renew our public housing. We need to lift our effort, and the government I lead is committed to doing so.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Porter.

MS PORTER: Minister, why is public housing renewal important to urban renewal overall?

MR BARR: As part of significant reform of the gateway to our city, as part of a desire to ensure that public housing is more evenly distributed across the city and that we do not have large, concentrated pockets of socioeconomic disadvantage, it is important that we undertake this renewal task.

Canberra’s communities deserve best practice places and spaces, and that is exactly what we are seeking to achieve through our urban renewal agenda, of which public housing renewal is a significant part. We need environmentally, socially and economically better outcomes from our public housing stock and from our urban renewal goals overall. Our older public housing estates are built to the opposite of what is considered best practice now. We need renewal, and that is exactly what the government will deliver.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Chief Minister, does the renewal of public housing along Northbourne Avenue mean that those public housing tenants who currently live along the proposed light rail route will be relocated along the light rail route if they so wish?

MR BARR: In large part, yes, it does. The experience from the first round of changes, the 20 tenants who are in the bedsits in the Dickson flats, is that they were given their choice across the city as to where they wished to relocate. The majority in fact chose elsewhere because they wanted to be closer to work, family or friends, but everyone who wanted to stay within that particular region did so. It is our expectation that over the next five years or so—subject, of course, to our success with territory plan variations to identify and achieve actual change in the territory plan to deliver alternative sites along the light rail corridor and within the inner north, and there are a number of sites identified that are part of the territory plan variation process—we should be able to meet the wide variety of preferences of existing housing tenants. This process will take a number of years; it is not all happening tomorrow. The program that we have outlined is over the rest of this decade, and it will presumably also continue into the 2020s.

Gaming—poker machines

MR WALL: My question is to the Chief Minister. I refer to email correspondence from the director of ClubsACT to one of his members in December of 2014 regarding a forthcoming regulation about poker machines accepting $50 notes. The director of ClubsACT advised:

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