MINISTERS STATEMENTS: FISHERMENS BEND DEVELOPMENT
I rise to inform the house of new action that the Andrews Labor government is taking to fix the calamity caused by the former Minister for Planning and now Leader of the Opposition’s slapdash rezoning of the Fishermans Bend precinct. I have asked my department to coordinate a whole-of-government effort to conduct an audit of all land rezoning decisions taken by the previous government. We need now to know exactly how much the Leader of the Opposition’s — —
Mr Guy interjected.
The SPEAKER — Order! The Leader of the Opposition will allow the Treasurer to continue
MR PALLAS — We need to know how much the Leader of the Opposition’s cowboy approach to rezoning is eventually going to cost.
Honourable members interjecting.
The SPEAKER — Order! The Treasurer is entitled to silence. I ask the Treasurer to continue. Members will allow him to continue in silence.
Mr PALLAS — The former Minister for Planning was willing to rezone hundreds of millions of dollars worth of inner-city land without a strategy or any clear, publicly discussed rationale. Clearly this government cannot work on the assumption that this is where it ends or that the Leader of the Opposition conducted himself properly in his job. The man is to metropolitan planning what John Howard was to spin bowling: uncoordinated and aimless. He is the Tonya Harding of planning probity. It is no wonder that his projects limped along, dragging down future budgetary capacity.
Some estimates coming from experts say that this reckless blunder, even if it is limited to Fishermans Bend, will cost taxpayers around $340 million. That is 845 nurses. That is 29 new primary schools. That is 17 000 square kilometres of resurfaced roads. That is more than half of Bendigo Hospital. I guess that is what you expect from a bloke who rates as a good time watching the Titanic sink.