Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 10 Hansard (Tuesday, 12 September 2017) . . Page.. 3536 ..
MADAM SPEAKER: Just a minute, Treasurer. Please resume your seat and stop the clock. Please, members, Ms Le Couteur is sitting at the back of the chamber. She is trying to hear the Treasurer, who, as protocol requires, is facing the chair. So she is having difficulty hearing. Treasurer.
Mr Wall: Comments are directed to the chair, but don’t you think he needs to be facing us?
MR BARR: Thank you, Madam Speaker, and Mr Wall for the advice on whether I should in fact be addressing my comments to you, to him or to other people in the chamber. The form of this place, particularly sitting in this place, is that it is not appropriate for me to turn around and address all of my comments directly to Ms Le Couteur. I will put my comments, remarks and answers to the question to you, Madam Speaker, as I am addressing you, the chair of the Assembly.
Regardless of which direction I am facing and whether those opposite seek to interject over the top of me, Madam Speaker, the point is that there is a variety of different concession programs available for members of the community. The simple point is that those people who were paying an extreme amount of stamp duty are now paying significantly less. Had we left the policy settings alone, stamp duty would have been even higher. It is very important to address housing affordability challenges and one of the best ways is to reduce stamp duty.
MS LE COUTEUR: When did the government last conduct a detailed analysis of the eligibility rules for rates concessions and deferments to make sure that vulnerable people get the assistance they need?
MR BARR: In the concessions review recently completed.
MS CHEYNE: Chief Minister, how much has stamp duty reduced for a $500,000 property in the ACT?
Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, Madam Speaker, the question that Ms Le Couteur asked was about rates concessions for elderly Canberrans. It was not a general question about stamp duty. The question from Ms Cheyne does not flow naturally from the questions asked by Ms Le Couteur, and I think you have to rule it out of order.
Ms Le Couteur: My point was that the Treasurer did not in fact answer my question. I asked about deferment, not just concessions. He did not touch upon that in his answer. I did not have time to get up before Ms Cheyne was up with a supplementary.
MADAM SPEAKER: Ms Cheyne, I will give you an opportunity to rephrase your question.