Updated

July 12, 2019 13:53:20

Labor politician Bec Cody is standing by her call for the National Capital Authority (NCA) to be abolished, and claims that her comments have not damaged the ACT Government’s relationship with the independent federal body.

Key points:

  • The NCA controls Commonwealth land within the Parliamentary Triangle in Canberra
  • Bec Cody says NCA-controlled land needs “activation” and she is not trying to “pick a fight” with the federal body
  • Opposition spokesman Mark Parton says Ms Cody is an “unguided missile” who is “absolutely out of her depth”

Yesterday the Government backbencher tweeted that the NCA, which is responsible for protecting the heritage of the Parliamentary Triangle, should “get on with it or get out of the way” of plans to build light rail through the precinct.

The NCA’s approval is needed by the ACT Government on any plan to build light rail across the lake and around Parliament House.

But in an uncomfortable interview on ABC Radio Canberra this morning, Ms Cody defended her comments, and alleged the NCA could “do more”.

“I look at things like Kingston, Braddon, they’re becoming vibrant, full of life, there’s lots of activation,” Ms Cody said.

“People come to Canberra a lot of the time to see our national institutions: the gallery, the library, all sorts of buildings we’ve got, but there is nothing else going on there.”

“Kingston Foreshore is a great example. There’s wonderful bars and restaurants and we’re utilising that part of the lake … but there is nowhere else around the lake.”

The Kingston Foreshore falls under the NCA’s responsibilities.

When asked whether lack of development was sufficient reason for the Authority to be scrapped, Ms Cody said the NCA was slow to make decisions.

Cody an ‘unguided missile’

Opposition MLA Mark Parton said Ms Cody’s comments were ignorant.

“Bec Cody is an unguided missile. She is absolutely out of her depth,” Mr Parton said.

“We had some loose suggestions that there needed to be more ‘activation’, and on the basis of there needing to be more ‘activation’ we should abolish a whole public service department,” he said.

Ms Cody said she was not trying to “pick a fight” with the NCA, and said her comments were not damaging to the Government’s relationship.

“I’m one person with an opinion that believes more can be done,” she said.

But Mr Parton said it was “absurd” to suggest her comments had not hurt the Government’s relationship with the NCA.

“I think, whoever it is, if you call for someone’s assassination it is probably going to affect the relationship with that person,” Mr Parton said.

In a statement, a spokesman for the Chief Minister said the Government did not believe the Authority should be scrapped.

“The ACT Government has a productive relationship with the NCA,” the statement read.

“We respect the role they play in supporting Canberra’s role as the national capital.”

Yesterday NCA chief executive Sally Barnes said the Authority was working with the Government, but it was up to them to present a plan for light rail.

Topics:

urban-development-and-planning,

community-and-society,

local-government,

states-and-territories,

government-and-politics,

canberra-2600,

act

First posted

July 12, 2019 13:25:23



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