Fact checking ACT Ministers’ press statements

 Gentleman’s patronising praise

The planning minister’s 22 March media release on the feedback received on the planning reforms was a real gem.

The impression given was that loads of people were engaged and the government was listening. Please do not laugh.

Over the last decade residents have been annoyed with the inaccuracy of the planning directorate’s feedback reports. Instead of reflecting what was submitted, they cherry-pick comments from allied support clans and misrepresent the points raised in the resident’s submissions.

To no-one’s surprise, the ACT Government’s listening reports confirm the agenda of those running the consultations, the ACT planning directorate.

In this latest media statement, the minister tried to sound as if he read the 400 or so submissions. He summed them up with three general points plus one to praise the organised feedback in support of the Missing Middle scam on affordable housing.

It remains a puzzle how groups such as ACTCOSS and The ACT Conservation Council were fooled into putting their name to a developer driven scam that has proven to be a myth elsewhere.

But at least they were thanked by Mick Gentleman for supporting his deregulation reforms rather than sticking to values of equity and addressing urban climate issues.

Here’s Mick Gentleman’s media release.



Rebecca Vassarotti storms the federal parliament about social housing

On Friday 22 March, ACT Greens MLA Rebecca Vassarotti sent a message to supporters to rally at Parliament House on Tuesday 28th in support for ‘real action on the housing crisis’.

This ACT Greens MLA happens to be the ACT Minister for Homelessness and Housing Services. She is part of the Greenslabor government that took all the profits from the sale of social housing complexes along Northbourne and in the inner south and then totally diverted that money to pay for the tram.

There has been a silence from this government on the shocking behaviour that must have resulted in people not having a roof over their heads because this government chose to spend housing money over on their big red tram.

Knowing this, Rebecca Vassarotti demands that the federal government increase its commitment to pay for social housing. They have the audacity to say the federal government is not contributing enough.

Some have said her call for action on housing is hypocrisy. I think it is worse than that but have yet to work out how such people front up smiling as if they have done nothing wrong, as if they do not see the queue waiting for social housing.

Maybe Vassarotti thinks that those big red things on rails are actually housing. She should check on this when she next catches the tram to work.



Yvette Berry builds social houses to partly replace those she bulldozed

This ACT Minister for Housing has the habit of quoting figures to deny her poor performance on the provision of social housing.

Whenever she brags about what has been achieved she quotes her own target figures but neglects to say how her achievements stack up against what was here in previous years and what should have been built by now. She refuses to provide the real net figure on housing. According to the latest report on this, the ACT government is performing very badly.

And let’s not forget that Yvette Berry was another of the self-styled ‘progressive’ ministers who looked the other way when ACT Housing moneys was used to pay for the tram.

Please do not believe the hype on the standard of the build. No solar, loads of concrete, no double glazing and minimal landscapes. Twenty-one new households are lucky to have new homes but would it be more thoughtful and humane if they were not about to be tenants of a Greenslabor supplied heat island.

To promote her political achievements, this minister took two senior public sector employees for a photo opportunity in front of the new social housing on 27th March. This photo was included in an article in local media. There were quotes from the public servants.

Those public sector employees need to be reminded not to put the political needs of the ministers before their duty and responsibilities to the public. Stay out of politics and be busy on something when the next call comes from Yvette Berry to be her rent-a-crowd.


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