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The Epicentre smell continues

By Pandy 13 July 2006 35

The Canberra Times reports that Mr Corbell believes both government agencies ACTPLA and the LDA) acted appropriately and that the registered bidders were responsible for due diligence, not the ACT Government.

“Complaints from Mr Snow are from a disgruntled developer concerned about a competitor entering the market:, Mr Corbell said.

Simon you also ignore everyone else who is complaining about the process. Playing Snowjob the man no longer washes with me. It is view emerging with others I have coffee with.

The information supplied by ACTPLA, eight days before the auction should have been given to the other parties which would have pushed the price up of the land further. It is obvious that unlimited building opportunities on the site would have generated heat in the marketplace.

By keeping mum on the advice provided by ACTPLA to one party, at worst smacks of something sinister in the dealings between your Government and developers or at best of gross incompetence in not getting a better deal for the ACT taxpayer.

The way you are dealing with the issue, placing your head in the sand, playing the man and not resolving the faults in your bureaucracy makes this Government look like something from the Joh era.

I thought you were doing a reasonable job at planning, but it seems that it is getting a bit much for you and you are looking tired these days. Some planning issues were taken off you over the last cabinet reshuffle. It is about time you did a portfolio swap and hand over the reigns to someone else and keep your law and order portfolio.

What’s Your opinion?


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The Epicentre smell continues
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publius 5:16 am 01 Aug 06

Based on the ALP conference last weekend, and the spindoctoring we have heard about voting re school closures, we now know that what Simon meant to say about Epicentre was that the bulky goods site was in fact for retailing but he and his officials didn’t put it out that way because it would have been confusing to tell the marketplace what they actually meant to do.

publius 5:51 am 26 Jul 06

The senior officials have made major mistakes. They protect Corbell and he protects them. We need an ICAC in Canberra.

thetruth 3:22 pm 13 Jul 06

Chris S: I wouldn’t call Corbell pro-developer. If you look closely at the “reforms” they always move at a snails pace and are mired in process.

The planning nazis have been slowly sucking the oxygen out of Canberra and now they have managed to finally implode. But as was pointed out before – nothing will really happen, because change and ACT administration are not often seen in the same sentence.

Unfortunately, this is reflected in a vocal section of the community which wants to hold on to a 1970’s view of life.

thetruth 3:12 pm 13 Jul 06

Quite right Big Al, but here is the big scandal here – who are the brains of this little operation. Who has got the ear of Corbell, LDA or ACTPLA?

Big Al 2:35 pm 13 Jul 06

Oh I’m with you Tempestas – I don’t credit Corbell with the smarts to run a good conspiracy – this is straight forward incompetence – and Sonic has let the magnitude of Corbell’s ineptness reach such a stupendous scale that it has become a joke.

To pinch an old joke – when you look at Corbell you cant help thinking that there’s a village somewhere missing it’s idiot…

Tempestas 2:23 pm 13 Jul 06

Don’t you just love planning issues in this town.

Just remember to apply Occam’s razor, never look for conspiracy when incompetence would explain the situation just as well.

Chris S 2:12 pm 13 Jul 06

Since Simon Corbell took over the Planning portfolio, he has presided over a spiralling litany of planning and public policy failures.

* He abolished the LAPACs, tried to replace them with the always-going-to-fail Community Planning Forums, then hoicked this responsibility onto the Community Councils which were not, and still are not, the appropriate consultative forums for planning issues
* in opposition, criticised Brendan Smyth relentlessly for (from memory a handful of) uses of call-ins, then in government has called in so many projects we have lost count
* has become increasingly distant from Canberra residents; when he deigns to answer letters or correspondence, it is with more and more spin, and fewer and fewer answers to the concerns raised
* he abolished PALM (which was not necessarily a bad thing) but replaced it with ACTPLA, with the same people doing the same thing in the same way. It became nothing more than an expensive re-badging exercise
* he abolished the old Land Group (again, not a bad move) but replaced it with the LDA which ended up no better than what it was before
* the only “vision” he has had for the revitalisation of Civic came after private enterprise put their ideas forward
* he has continually fought with the NCA over the forestry settlements and a bunch of other matters – NCA are as bad, but Simon could never find the circuit-breaker
* he has been the most anti-resident Planning Minister this teritory has ever had – he has removed consultative bodies and objection and appeal rights, and has distanced himself from community leaders to the point where he now no longer meets with them
* he has been the most pro-developer Planning Minister we have seen for many years – he regularly attends HIA/MBA/PCA lunch/dinner meetings to unveil yet more planning reforms that give developers another leg up
* there are now many questions about what is happening with the ‘Bundah caravan park, and speculation that a deal Will allow CBL to profit from buying a caravan park with no development rights, to a swap for land that gives him a windfall profit
* his proposed busway was unceremoniously dumped after the last reshuffle
* as both Health and Planning Minister, he was the proponent and approver (through call-in) of the Karralika “refurbishment” (which in reality was a major redevelopment), was sanctioned (again) by the Legislative Assembly, and eventually rolled by people power

These are just a few issues off the top of my head – if I dug into the archives, no doubt I would find more.

The bottom line is that he is now an embarrassment for Sonic, must be sacked from all his portfolios and sent to the back bench until the next election, when hopefully the voters will put him where he belongs – on his arse.

thetruth 12:50 pm 13 Jul 06

that should have been cannot find a home… I am so ticked I can’t even winge straight!

thetruth 12:49 pm 13 Jul 06

What i don’t understand (or prehaps I do) why is it that every other agency is almost paralised with procurment fear about treating everyone the same. On every Federal Governemnt tenders for services and goods from $10k up I recieve every bit of information that is given from the agency to any inquiry – even when they say the same thing twice (just try it on austender).

BUT and agency whose central commitment is selling assets for millions doen not do the same………..SHAME SHAME SHAME.

Next person that can find a home or dies while on a waiting list or parent that has to explain to a child why they can’t go to school with their friend must lay the blame at Corbell and if Stanhope doesn’t act then the people of the ACT must at the next election. This crowd is a total joke transport ministers done DUI, Chief Ministers that can tell every other leader how to do their job, but can’t do his own…. My vote is up for grabs (now I need someone talented engough to claim it … but thats another issue)

Pandy 12:33 pm 13 Jul 06

Veritas you said thetruth.

Big Al 12:33 pm 13 Jul 06

Areaman it isn’t about just wether or not an e-mail got forwarded on though is it. It’s about a systematic failure of the ACT Government and its agencies to act in the best interests of ACT residents.

Anyway you look at it it’s manifestly incompetent that information could be selectively distributed to registered bidders when its an established practice that any information requested by any registered bidder be released to all registered bidders. Because this didn’t happen we have all been shafted to the tune of around $30 million.

Snow stopped bidding at $38 million not because he’d run out of money, but because that was all he could justify paying for a bulky goods site – on the other hand Austexx were happy to keep bidding because they new that $39 million was a bargain for a retail site – because they had been privy to information selectively released by the ACT Government. If Corbell isn’t responsible for this who is? If the dip-shit doesn’t walk Stanhope should sack the prick.

Pandy 12:32 pm 13 Jul 06

areaman, C-in-C that I ask a Governmnet authority “Say if I buy the land can I put what I like on it, no matter what the law says?” and the authority says; “Ok. But we wont tell anyone else about this, wink wink”. You don’t see anything wrong in this? You dont see that the whole matter places the Stanhope Governmnet in a bad light? You dont see that Simon needs to reform sale process so that all future correspondence like this should be distributed to registered parties before the sale happening? Who are you working for?

thetruth 12:28 pm 13 Jul 06

Seriously there should be a royal commission into this? Yes making advice that effects the market is procurment 101.

Corbell must explain why he did not ensure that the agencies he created (both LDA and ACTPLA) did not ensure that the market was availed with the information required to maximise return.

Simple Corbell and Savery must go or explain publically why accepting a lower than market price is go management… Disgraceful and most likely corrupt!!!!!

areaman 12:19 pm 13 Jul 06

And oh areaman, you seems to ignore that Simon Corbell says that the LDA and ACTPLA “acted appropriately”. Care to make a comment on that after what you said “sure show them the door”?

Because I don’t believe there is such a person who fulfils all requirements I listed (knew of the advice, knew what it would mean, thought they were supposed to and allowed to forward it on) above, especially as I haven’t seen any official word saying they were allowed to forward on the advice at all (as I believe it’s commercial in confidence).

Pandy 12:12 pm 13 Jul 06

And oh areaman, you seems to ignore that Simon Corbell says that the LDA and ACTPLA “acted appropriately”. Care to make a comment on that after what you said “sure show them the door”?

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