Page 2469 - Week 08 - Tuesday, 9 August 2016
MADAM SPEAKER: It is all right, Mrs Jones. I will stand to be corrected, but the last thing I heard you say, Mr Corbell, was that the bushfire abatement zones had not been abandoned in relation to planning. Mrs Jones had asked you about bushfire fighting. I would ask you to address the question of the use of bushfire abatement zones in relation to bushfire fighting in accordance with the standing orders.
MR CORBELL: I am sorry, could you repeat the last part of your ruling, Madam Speaker?
MADAM SPEAKER: In accordance with the standing order, to be directly relevant and address the issue of Mrs Jones’s question.
MR CORBELL: Madam Speaker, I was being directly relevant, and I will continue to be so. The fact is that bushfire abatement zones are not in place for operational response and nor have they ever been. There are other arrangements that determine operational response. Those matters are determined through the relevant arrangements coordinated between the two fire services and the overarching rule that the nearest and most appropriate appliance is the appliance that has responded to a fire.
Mrs Jones interjecting—
MR CORBELL: I beg your pardon?
MADAM SPEAKER: Do not have a conversation across the chamber; answer the question.
Mrs Jones interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Mrs Jones, I warn you!
MR CORBELL: The government’s policy and the ESA standing provisions are very clear. The nearest and most appropriate appliance that is on duty is the appliance or the vehicle that has responded to a fire. This is the whole point about bushfire response. It is not about which service deals with it; it is about whether or not the fire is put out and who can do that the quickest and who can do that in the safest and most effective manner. So it does not matter whether it is a Fire and Rescue vehicle or an RFS vehicle.
If they are the nearest and most appropriate vehicle, they are the vehicle that has responded to the fire, and that is how it should be.
MR COE: My question is to the Treasurer. Treasurer, why did the Labor clubs get away with not paying a change of use charge for their site in Braddon?
MR BARR: I have got to say the irony of being asked a question from the Canberra Liberals about the lease variation charge is not lost on me. In the instance you refer to, it would appear that the before and after valuations were the same.