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Privatisation of Public Assets

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Tags: Treasury Building, Public Assets


Tasmanians now know that developers have their eyes on the art school, the Treasury building and the St. Johns Street offices in Launceston. Can you confirm that the Office of the Coordinator-General has asked the Crown Lands section of your other department for a full list of crown land in Tasmania that may be made available to private developers? If so, will you provide that list to the House? Can you confirm that the Office of the Coordinator-General has the imprimatur from you to let developers know that there is a significant highly value portfolio of public crown land available to them as part of your plan to sell the farm? If this is the case can you outline whether this process of proactive disclosure to developers is part of the unsolicited bids framework or is another process of solicited bids?



Madam Speaker, we are seeing here an attempt by the Greens to suggest that something untoward is going on in relation to proper and legitimate activities by the Coordinator-General to inform himself about the assets of the state so he can be informed in relation to any discussions that might take place.

As we have made clear through this effort by the Greens to stand in the way of investment and job creation opportunities for this state, it is the ordinary function of government that assets are bought and sold. That happened under the previous government. It has happened under every government. It will happen under this Government. It will happen under any future government. This notion that there is something inappropriate or untoward is a proposition I categorically reject.

I take the opportunity to repeat some of the transactions that have happened under previous governments, and I know that the member for Denison does not want to hear this.


Ms O'CONNOR - Point of order, 195, Madam Speaker. The minister has not answered the question in the minute or so he has been standing and now he is indicating to the House that he is not going to answer the question.


Madam SPEAKER - Order. I should be the only one speaking to you all on that point of order. There were three questions, not one question, therefore I am allowing the minister quite a bit of latitude. If you are going to ask questions that contain more than one question then you have opened the door to the very wide response. The minister can answer it as he sees fit.


Mr GROOM - I appreciate the member's defensiveness because the truth is that she is engaged in gross hypocrisy. Under the previous government assets were sold. There is a litany of assets that have been sold under previous governments: 137 Harrington Street, Hobart for $2.87 million; Prospect offices for $3.82 million, 79 Franklin Wharf for $2.786 million, Highfield House for $3.6 million, City Villas for $1.2 million, former Hazelwood Special School for $1.7 million, the former Brent Street Primary School for $1.95 million, Trinity Hill for $2.8 million, the former Claremont Primary School, the former Kingston High School, and on 29 November 2010 the government in which the member was a participant made a decision to transfer Jane Franklin Hall.