Dr WOODRUFF (Franklin) - Madam Speaker, I want to speak about the fantastic news from the eastern shore that the Rosny Hill development has been withdrawn. The development for the top of that beautiful nature recreation area on Rosny Hill that was to be subject to a monstrous development that would have completely gobbled up that recreation area. It would have been a blight on the landscape for people looking at the hill from other parts of Hobart and Kangaroo Bay and Bellerive, removing forever the public access to solitude, reflection, beauty and recreation in the middle of a very crowded city.
This is a result of a fantastic amount of work from the Friends of Rosny Hill, Kangaroo Bay Voice Network, Clarence Action Network, another newly formed group on the eastern shore, and people from Bellerive and the Bellerive Bluff area. These are all people who have banded together as a result of the actions of the Clarence City Council over the last two years. It has only been since December 2015 that the Clarence Council allowed a development application to be dropped in on the eve of Christmas and a decision was made in early January by the council on a massive development that we now know was stitched up by the Department of State Growth. They went to China, found a Chinese petrochemical company called Shandong Chambord, brought them back and encouraged them to put a large development application into the Clarence City Council.
That company and the council worked for two years before the community had a chance to have a look at that blight on the Kangaroo Bay foreshore. People had done the work with council and created the Kangaroo Bay development plan that was supported and went through the Tasmanian Planning Commission. This is the work that used to occur in the Clarence Council and the relationship in the community that pre-existed the current way that the council is operating. They are acting like they are on steroids, they have far too much of a sense of their own importance and far too little interest in engaging with their local community.
The by-law which the council has in place at the moment prevents and prohibits people, if the general manager agrees to it, from assembling in a public place to rally, protest or publicly speak in any voice of dissention to council's development applications, how they are managing the process and their failure to consult with the community. That is a fundamental right and it is a concern that we have Labor and Liberal members who think it is reasonable to allow by-laws that bring in a nanny state approach, which will silence people in unions, silence people who want to protest about workplace issues. Out on the front lawns every other week it seems we have got doctors and nurses, members of the CPSU, members of the ANMF, demonstrating their right to public protest for the working conditions that they are working under which they believe are unfair and underpaid. These are conditions which every person in the Labor Party would be determined to do something about except to support the valid concerns and the cautionary note of the Tasmanian police about the overreaching powers that councils now think are reasonable. A culture-
Madam SPEAKER - Order.
Dr WOODRUFF - I am talking about the issue in Tasmania where we have councils that have nanny state by-laws that shut people down. If it were ever the case in the past every single time that they come before this House they should be looked at anew. That is the role of parliamentarians. It is our role to understand when the culture keeps shifting inexorably towards shutting people down; it is our job to speak up about that. It is clear, it has been a boiled frog syndrome in Tasmania and people in England, people in other parts of Australia they can see that. We might have got used to it, we might have thought that it was okay, but it is not okay. In the current environment, the current political and global environment it is more important than ever to shore up our democratic rights to free speech, free association.
Mr Hidding - Why did you not fix it when you were on your council?
Ms O'Connor - I will talk about that if you like. They are very different by-laws.
Madam SPEAKER - Order. Through the Chair.
Dr WOODRUFF - Let us just be clear that we have a Minister for Local Government who is more than happy to stand in this place and speak utter falsehoods. There is an absolute difference between council places and public places. What we have on the eastern shore right now is an opportunity for the general manager to ban people from public places. That is all public places period, including the nature recreation area at the top of Rosny Hill.
We will continue to stand up for the people on the eastern shore about this matter.