Ms O'CONNOR question to PREMIER, Mr HODGMAN
Today, hundreds of people from all over Tasmania will converge on Town Hall to take a stand against your Government's open for business mantra and a clear and present threat to the east coast that it has delivered. The Cambria Green mega proposal is the catalyst for a growing alarm across the state that 'open for business' is trashing what makes this island special and that it is an open invitation to any and all developers, that under your Government anything goes. Do you think Cambria Green represents sensible and sustainable development? When will you start listening to the people instead of vested interests? When will you start prioritising the protection of Tasmanian communities, the environment and our unique island way of life? Will you rule out giving any legislative, financial or bureaucratic backing to the proponents of the Cambria Green mega development?
Madam Speaker, I thank the member for the question. It is true to say that Tasmania is now a much more investment-ready place. There is much more confidence amongst the private sector to develop in this state than there was under the Labor-Greens government. That is good because it is supporting economic growth across our state. It is supporting jobs in regional areas across our state, and it is supporting the Government's agenda to reinvest the strong benefits of a good economy and a good budget back into our schools and hospitals. We will continue to do what we can to keep the strong, positive momentum happening.
We will not do what the Greens are suggesting we do - pick and choose developments, or override the local government authorities that have the responsibility to be the planning approvals authority. That is what the Greens want us to do. They are normally the ones who say that we should not interfere in due process, but on this occasion now they are saying we should step in when it suits them and override councils, take away their planning powers and interfere in their processes. We will not do that -
Ms O'CONNOR - Madam Speaker, relevance. I asked whether he would rule out giving any legislative, bureaucratic or financial backing to the proponent.
Madam SPEAKER - Ms O'Connor, you know my hands are tied on how the Premier answers these questions, but I will ask him to consider your question.
Mr HODGMAN - Thank you. I will continue to address the pertinent issue and that goes to ensuring that our planning processes can be free of interference that the Greens are suggesting and that Tasmanians can have confidence, including those who want to express a view are able to do so.
A couple of key pertinent facts. The Glamorgan Spring Bay Council has voted in favour of rezoning. As the member knows, the assessment of this proposal is following standard rezoning processes under the Land Use Planning and Approvals Act 1993 and will ultimately be determined by the Tasmanian Planning Commission. Not the Greens, but by the Tasmanian Planning Commission. The independent commission is the responsible body to assess and decide upon rezoning applications and the rigorous process under the act provides ample opportunity for the public to have their say. We trust in this thorough and independent process.
I point out once again that the Government and the Minister for Planning, as has been suggested, have some involvement in this matter. Well he does not. We are all about providing a strong, stable majority government with a clear open, transparent and robust planning system that allows the proposals to come forward to be tested on their merits and to be assessed independently. Not determined by the do nothing, oppose everything Greens.