Section: Katy Gallagher, MLA | Media Releases
ACT Chief Minister, Katy Gallagher, has reflected on a busy and successful fortnight both inside and out of the ACT Legislative Assembly.
"While much of the work of the Assembly often goes unnoticed by Canberrans, it is important to outline the work that the Government has undertaken, which contributes to building a stronger Canberra," the Chief Minister said.
"The sitting fortnight began with the release of the Transport for Canberra Strategy, which shows how the ACT Labor Government intends to meet the challenges of a growing city and deliver major improvements in the way Canberrans get around our city in a sustainable way.
"It was a great way to kick off what was to be an incredibly productive fortnight. We also opened the best Adult Mental Health Unit in the country - delivering innovative models of care, yesterday opened the Majura Park shopping centre which will create 400 new jobs, and today we will open the new state-of-the- art Belconnen Police Station, providing a brand new facility for our police officers to continue to do the very important work they do in our community.
"On the Legislative front, we have again delivered significant reforms across many areas debating electoral reform, introduction of the Financial Management Amendment Bill to ensure greater Government accountability, debated and passed the Government Procurement Bill to reduce red tape for small business, as well as introduced a range of bills that will create greater efficiencies for business, and make home ownership achievable for more Canberrans.
"The introduction of the Energy Efficiency (Cost of Living) Improvement Bill will reduce energy costs to households and small business, and the introduction of the Portable Long Service Leave Bill - which will be a first in Australia for the security industry - set to benefit over 2,500 security workers in the ACT," the Chief Minister said.
"This week also saw the introduction of many bills, which included improvements to classifications for computer games, road transport legislation, and importantly the Government moved to amend the Human Rights Act (2004) to include the right to education, to protect some of the most vulnerable in our community.
"There is no doubt that it has been an incredibly busy fortnight, but I believe it demonstrates the hard working, dedicated and energetic Assembly team we have.
"We look forward to progressing and discussing both legislation passed, and that still to be considered with the community in coming weeks," the Chief Minister concluded.
Summary of executive business in the ACT Legislative Assembly
Tuesday 20th March
1. Tabled CTP Review - showed 2008 changes working well but more work needed to improve long-term scheme operation.
Wednesday 21st March
1. Motion moved by Mary Porter MLA and passed calling for further negotiations with Parkwood Farm on adopting alternative egg production methods.
Thursday 22nd March
1. Introduced Financial Management Amendment Bill - tightens up financial reporting and Government accountability.
2. Debated and passed Government Procurement Bill - reduces red tape for small business and improves administrative efficiency.
3. Debated and passed Road Transport Legislation - helps our police officers identify drivers and allows our police to do their jobs in a safer environment.
4. Introduced Energy Efficiency (Cost of Living) Improvement Bill - delivering energy efficiency savings to up to 70,000 Canberra households and cutting energy bills by up to $300, per annum, by 2015.
Tuesday 27th March
1. Statement on the Enlarged Cotter Dam.
Wednesday 28th March
1. Motion moved by Mary Porter MLA and passed unanimously calling on the Government to take advantage of tourism opportunities in the Centenary. The motion also called on the Government to work to secure international flights and call on the Federal Government to adequately fund the NCA.
2. Introduced Long Service Leave (Portable Schemes) (Security Industry) Amendment Bill 2012 - provides for the creation of a new portable scheme for the long service leave entitlements of workers in the security industry. With over 2,500 workers providing vital public safety services for our community, with short-term working arrangements, the portable scheme will be the first in Australia for Security workers. It will add to list of workers in the contract cleaning, building and construction and community sectors who have benefited from the Labor Government's protection of Long Service leave entitlements.
Thursday 29th March
1. Introduced Land Rent Bill - making it easier for people to achieve the dream of home ownership by widening the role of Community Housing Canberra (CHC) in the Land Rent Scheme.
2. Introduced Duties Amendment Bill - improving the operation of the innovative and successful Land Rent Scheme by clarifying the duty on a parcel of land rent land when transferred.
3. Introduced Duties Amendment Bill 2 - making life easier for businesses by eliminating charges when a business is transferred to a new owner.
4. Introduced Rates and Land Tax Amendment Bill - reduces tax burden for those living in residential communal title and ensures the most appropriate rates (residential) are levied on common areas under community title. Also removes land tax on these communal areas when they are non-rented residential or rural.
5. Introduced Road Transport Traffic Infringements Bill - closes the loophole that allows avoidance of demerit points for speeding and other infringements.
6. Introduced R18+ Classification Bill - allows for the creation of a classification category for computer games, which will empower adults to make informed decision and control content that may be harmful to children.
7. Introduced Human Rights Amendment Bill - to include the right to education in the Act, which is the first time such a move has been taken by a Government in Australia.
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