Page 1964 - Week 07 - Wednesday, 3 June 2015

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demolished the unused building that was at the back of the block. That area is now absolutely clear, and it is in that space that they will have a recreation area and learning area.

The buttress that is really just poured cement over an incline will turn into tiered seating. There will be recreation space. The principal spoke about exercise bikes that will be put in place where you can plug in your smart phone. You can do exercise on a bike and charge your smart phone. That is what we are providing as one of the improved amenities at Belconnen high.


MR COE: Madam Speaker, my question is to the Minister for Roads and Parking. I make reference to a comment by former Labor senator Kate Lundy that it was a “disappointing” budget for Canberra motorists, with increases in parking charges and motor vehicle registrations. An official from the NRMA notes that the government will raise $216 million from motorists this financial year alone. Why has the government increased parking fees and motor vehicle registration by so much in this year’s budget?

MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Mr Coe for his question and his eloquent discussion about our new member for the NRMA in the ACT. I will not go to the comments and the answer on registration, because it is not in my portfolio, but I can advise that, in regard to costs for parking, it is part of an integrated transport network plan that the government has instituted. That means that we will be able to look at where parking can become available for commuters across the territory, ensure that parking prices are appropriate for that area and, of course, encourage active travel across the city.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Coe.

MR COE: Minister, will the increases in parking and/or other fees related to motor vehicles reduce demand for the relevant service?

MR GENTLEMAN: Once again I will talk to my directorate’s work on parking. That includes active transport as well. As I said, we will be able to allocate particular parking areas. We will be able to encourage people to park in different areas across the city. It will encourage some churn in city areas so that short-term parking in the ACT will be taken up by those visitors wanting to go to the local shopping centres and take opportunity there. Long-term parking will be at the fringes of the city. That will encourage people to park in those areas, with the associated costs.

I can say that the business industry across the ACT have encouraged this. They are saying that churn for the ACT is appropriate and it will encourage people to come and shop in the local centres.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Hanson.

MR HANSON: Do you agree with the former senator’s comments that this is a “disappointing” budget?

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