Draft Variation 306 to the Territory Plan

The ACT Green’s say that Draft Variation 306 to the Territory Plan (DV306) still does not adequately address solar access.

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Caroline Le Couteur MLA, Planning Spokesperson, ACT Greens

12 August 2011

Groundhog Day, but still no solar access

The ACT Government has announced a 6 week extension to community consultation on Draft Variation 306 to the Territory Plan – a further delay to the implementation of solar access rights. 

“This is groundhog day for solar access in the ACT,” said Greens planning spokesperson, Caroline Le Couteur MLA.

“Last year the Government was forced to send two Territory Plan Variations (301 and 303) to a specially established expert reference panel because the variations were too complicated and divisive.  They were then replaced by Draft Territory Plan Variation 306, which is still long and complicated. So now the Government has been forced to give industry and the community more consultation time.

“The consultation period has been extended to 6 September, but sadly this will delay some sustainability requirements within Variation 306. We still have not seen any of the advice given by the reference panel to government, which is a shame, as it should be background reading for people wishing to understand the variation.

“Solar access is one issue where I believe that the Canberra community is united.  We all agree that we deserve solar access rights.  People in Canberra should be able to build without the risk of losing all their sunlight.

Ms Le Couteur tabled an Assembly motion in October 2010 to split solar access rights from controversial planning zone changes to allow the prompt implementation of solar access rights. But Labor voted with the Liberal Party to adjourn the debate.

“If my motion had been passed last year, Canberrans could have had solar access rights by now. This would have allowed the community to better focus on the myriad of other issues in this Variation, such as plot ratios, setbacks and dwelling numbers per block in good time with plenty of consultation.

“Instead the Government is persisting on including both common sense changes that the community supports, as well as some complicated and controversial changes.

“I call on the Government to honour its commitment to the Labor-Greens Parliamentary Agreement and implement solar access rights in the ACT,” said Ms Le Couteur.

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