Page 3039 - Week 10 - Wednesday, 16 September 2015

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The bill also includes a definition of “small business”—namely, a business wholly controlled or owned by an individual, a partnership, a corporation or a trust; is managed by either the individual, a partnership the directors or a trustee; and either employs 15 people or fewer or, if it employs more than 15 people, the total number of hours worked by all of the employees in a given week is fewer than 570 hours—that is, a basis of a full-time equivalent of 15 people. For the purposes of this bill, full line supermarkets and service stations are excluded from the definition of a small business.

In large part this legislation is not trying to reinvent the wheel but is largely modelled on legislation that has been in place in Queensland already for a number of years. I believe it strikes the right balance of recognising the interests of the existing lotteries retail network, presents a genuine harm minimisation option by limiting the spread of gambling in our community, but also recognises the rights that the lottery operator should be able to maintain some opportunity for incremental growth within the ACT market.

I am in the hands of members as to how rapidly this bill is to progress through the Assembly as there is a genuine risk of service stations entering the retail space of lotteries within the coming weeks. I am happy to meet with any members to discuss the detail of this bill and to address any issues to ensure its smooth passage. I have consulted widely on the best way to approach this issue with the peak body for newsagents, a large number of existing outlets within the ACT, and members of our community, not to mention Tattersall’s as the lottery operator in the territory. I believe this is the most appropriate way forward, and I commend this bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Barr) adjourned to the next sitting.

Business confidence

DR BOURKE (Ginninderra) (10.09): I move:

That this Assembly:

(1) notes that:

(a) the Commonwealth Office of the Chief Economist has recently found that on a population-adjusted basis that the ACT is the highest performing of all Australian jurisdictions on both innovation and entrepreneurship;

(b) the focus of the renewed business development strategy: Confident and Business Ready is to build on Canberra’s strengths to generate more jobs in innovation, research and education, and create a more attractive business environment;

(c) the ACT Government has committed $11.75 million in new funding over the next two years to deliver Confident and Business Ready;

(d) the Government is cutting red tape for business through the operation of Access Canberra and regular red tape reduction legislation; and

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