Page 5363 - Week 14 - Thursday, 30 November 2017

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This is why I am pleased, as the Canberra Liberals member for Kurrajong and the non-executive member for Kurrajong, to sponsor this petition. I am also pleased that, because the petition was signed by so many local residents, the matter will now be referred to the relevant Assembly committee. I am also pleased that the voices of these 749 Canberrans will be heard and that I can help to give them that voice in the Assembly.

I thank the Lake Burley Griffin Guardians for their action, their dedication and their hard work in bringing forward this petition to the Assembly. I acknowledge Juliet Ramsay, convenor of the Guardians, who has shown leadership and has worked tirelessly in showing our community just how important the lake is to our city, our history and our people. I acknowledge the members of the Guardians who are here with us today and also the many other Guardians who are keeping a close eye on these proceedings from afar. Thank you for your ongoing commitment to our community. I commend the petition to the Assembly.

Red Hill natural environment—petitions 28-17 and 29-17

MS LAWDER (Brindabella) (10.20), by leave: In the last sitting period, we had a motion germane to the petition that is lodged today which was passed by the Assembly with some amendments. It had a theme about consultation being important. I have spoken about this many times, yet there continues to be a lack of proper, adequate, appropriate consultation between the ACT government and affected communities.

For some time, a number of these community groups have said that they are very concerned about potential development of the Red Hill open space area and that it is too important an issue to allow development to proceed on a piecemeal or incremental basis. There needs to be a holistic approach. That is exactly what the motion from the last sitting period talked about.

We have seen a community panel set up, but I note that six community groups that were part of that community panel process have withdrawn from that and in effect lodged their own dissenting report. This indicates exactly how poorly run that process was.

What we see today is a petition signed by hundreds or thousands of people who are concerned about that space. Some of them are here in the Assembly today in the gallery; I thank you for coming in and I thank you for working for your community. A petition is one of the most old-fashioned, if you like, ways to petition your local member and petition the government. It has been around for centuries. I would like to say that while a petition may be old-fashioned, it is absolutely fashionable to care about your community and it is absolutely in fashion to work to make your community better. I would like to thank all of those people who have taken part in that. It just shows the importance of active community lobbying and advocacy—making your local members and us in this place aware of your concerns, not sitting back—

Ms Stephen-Smith: Point of order.

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