The new ACT Government must move quickly to implement key promises made during the Assembly elections, according to the Inner South Canberra Community Council (ISCCC).

ISCCC President, Gary Kent, congratulated Chief Minister Katy Gallagher and Greens Leader Shane Rattenbury on forming government in the ACT for the next four years. The ISCCC would also like to express its appreciation to Caroline Le Couteur who, during her four years in the Assembly, worked closely with the ISCCC to progress matters of concern to the Inner South. “Caroline was an extraordinarily effective local member and we thank her for her efforts on our behalf”, said Mr Kent.

“The ISCCC is pleased that the Parliamentary Agreement between the Greens and the Australian Labor Party included several initiatives which will directly benefit Inner South Canberra residents”, including programs for:

–          new and improved bus routes and improved walking and cycling infrastructure

–          restoration of  the health of Canberra’ lakes and catchments, including the Lake Burley Griffin Willow Management Plan

–          creation of an urban tree trust, ‘Growing Community Gardens’ grants and Nature park improvements

“However, we are disappointed that neither the Agreement nor the attached ALP Policy programme refers to specific election commitments to improve Canberra’s adversarial and often ineffective planning system which, coupled with expensive and inequitable appeal mechanisms, continually produces poor outcomes”. These commitments include:

–          design competitions for major developments to be constructed on land owned by the ACT Government (ALP)

–          reinvigoration of the Planning and Development Forum (ALP)

–          funding for better regulation and enforcement of building quality (Greens)

–          funding to support community input into planning and development policy (Greens)

“We expect that these and many other commitments made during the election campaign are progressed urgently, as well as other ISCCC priorities, including:

–          urgent action on addressing the findings of the Assembly Planning Committee on DV306

–          the need to improve dialogue on cross-border planning between the ACT and NSW governments to avoid poor decisions, such as those affecting the amenity of residents in Oaks Estate”.

The ISCCC will be seeking an early meeting with relevant Ministers and the Opposition to press its case on behalf of local residents. “The initiatives announced in the Labor/Greens Parliamentary Agreement contain a range of useful ideas but much more needs to be done to improve the amenity and quality of life in Inner South Canberra. It also became clear during the election that the major parties took the Inner South for granted and focussed new spending and policy initiatives on other parts of Canberra. The needs of the Inner South will be the focus of a series of ISCCC submissions to members of the Assembly in coming months”, Mr Kent said.

11 November 2012

Media Contact: Gary Kent  0419 854 211; info@isccc.org.au; PO Box 3310, Manuka ACT 2603

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