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Media Release

Media Release – MBA Calls For More Development Application Call-Ins To Boost Jobs


Minister for Planning and Land Management, Mick Gentleman, has demonstrated last week that he is prepared to use the call-in powers under the Planning and Development Act 2007 to deliver on a four year old ACT Labor election commitment. 

Master Builders ACT CEO, Michael Hopkins said, “The Minister should be congratulated for making a bold decision to fast track a project which will create hundreds of construction jobs.”

“It takes political courage to use call-in powers, however our community is going to need many more courageous decisions for the local property and construction sector to lead the ACT out of a nation-wide recession,” he said.

 Mr Hopkins said, “There are currently numerous projects stuck in the quagmire of the ACT’s planning system waiting to commence construction.”

 “The MBA is calling on the Minister to use his call-in powers to approve other major projects so that thousands of construction jobs can be generated and economic value created for the Territory Government,” he said.

 Mr Hopkins said, “Section 159 of the Planning and Development Act 2007 allows the Minister to call in and approve projects if approval would provide a ‘substantial public benefit’.”

 “If not in the middle of an economic crisis created by a global health pandemic, then when would be a better time to determine that local job creation would be a ‘substantial public benefit’?” he said.

 Mr Hopkins said, “The ACT’s financial position relies on more than $1 billion in taxes from the local building industry each year.”

 “Around a thousand jobs have already been lost from the local building industry since the pandemic began, with many more job losses expected as major projects are cancelled or postponed due to approval delays,” he said.

 Mr Hopkins said, “The MBA will support and welcome bold decisions by the ACT Government to support local businesses and create local jobs.”

Authorised by Michael Hopkins on behalf of Master Builders Association of the ACT.