Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 07 Hansard (Thursday, 4 June 2015) . . Page.. 2057 ..
perpetual crown lease holder, in the first instance. The Australian National University can also access these components but would ﬁrst need to put a proposal to government, the same as the University of Canberra did, about what it would do to benefit the Canberra region. This new leasing model made it necessary to consider not just how a sublease of land should function but also what checks and balances were required to protect a sublessee’s rights and how the relationship between the crown lessee and sublessee should operate.
The main parts of the new leasing model are delivered through amendments to section 308 of the act and sections 220 and 221 of the regulation. The amendments to section 308 provide a time frame of 10 working days for the authority to consider and approve or not approve a sublease of land. However, the authority cannot approve a sublease if it is inconsistent with the prescribed criteria, if it does not comply with the Land Titles Act 1925 requirements, if it includes a provision that allows an extension of the sublease, or if the subleased land cannot be directly accessed by a road or road-related area. If the application is approved, the authority will provide the executed sublease to the land titles registrar for registration on title.
The amendments to the regulation, which prescribe the basic requirements for a sublease, represent a minimalistic legislative approach that demonstrates this government’s commitment to responsible regulatory reform. It prescribes such things as a purpose clause, commencement date, termination, and dispute resolution provisions. In addition, the sublease must also demonstrate that utility services are also capable of being connected to the boundary of the sublease. The bill also allows a perpetual crown lease held by the University of Canberra and, at a later date if required, the Australian National University access to the new unit title provisions. These provisions allow that a building on subleased land can be unit titled.
A grant of the land sublease at the university will be dutiable and the transfer of that sublease itself will be subject to normal duties, taxes and rates. If a building is unit titled, the new owners of those units become the persons responsible for rates and taxes. This, again, is no different to what happens now for a building that is unit titled under a crown lease. Each owner is responsible for rates and taxes. Stamp duty on the transfer is payable in exactly the same way as is presently the case when a unit is sold.
Under the new leasing model the university retains the land and controls how that land is developed. A sublessee will not have the freedom to determine what development happens on the site or the uses allowed. This will be a matter of negotiation between the parties. The university would work closely with the sublessee on design and siting of development and is a signatory on the development application.
I would like to now talk on the complementary provisions in the Land Titles Act which, together with these amendments, provide a strong legislative framework for the subleasing of land. The amendments provide a structure for how the sublease can be managed, including transfers, mortgages, surrenders et cetera, and emulate provisions in the Leases (Commercial and Retail) Act and the Planning and Development Act.