The planned East West Tollway will have an open cut exit ramp at Elliott Ave Parkville, between the Royal Melbourne Zoo and the Children's Hospital, which will dump traffic in the city.
"It will destroy open space and wetlands in Royal Park, expose residents to pollution and pour traffic onto Elliott Avenue near Flemington Road, making road congestion worse," said Victorian Greens leader Greg Barber
"You'd better believe we will fight this one all the way."
A freedom of information request by Greg Barber for traffic modelling of the controversial East-West Link road tunnel has been delivered by Linking Melbourne Authority very long overdue and very short on detail.
Mr BARBER (Northern Metropolitan) -- Since the 2006 state election -- the election in which I, Ms Pennicuik and Ms Hartland came to this place -- we have been advocating for a Senate-style system of committees and a range of other mechanisms to improve the scrutiny role of the upper house. Some progress has been made towards that, and we continue to advocate for that. As Mr Viney has just quite correctly said, we now have the structure of an upper house, Senate-style set of committees which can systematically hold the government to account and scrutinise governmental programs, legislation and individual issues as they arise. What we do not have is the resourcing for those committees to do their jobs, and we do not yet have embedded in this place the political culture that says those committees have the right to do their jobs.
Mr BARBER (Northern Metropolitan) -- I thank Mr Ramsay for that introduction. He is like my warm-up man over here!
The budget we have just seen delivered of course represents the political philosophy of the Treasurer, Mr O'Brien, and the Premier, Dr Napthine. It is hard not to notice how radically anti-environment this budget is. It is almost like it was put together by a couple of high priests of some sort of fossil fuel burning cult. There is actually an environment section in the glossies that go with the budget. What it contains is quite literally a statement of how if it moves, they will shoot it, and if it does not, they will cut it down, along with a new set of incentives to start digging more stuff up.
Victorian Greens leader Greg Barber has asked the State Government to declare western Victoria as drought affected, triggering Federal assistance.
Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Mr Barber said "I am requesting that [the Minister] take action to have western Victoria declared to be drought affected, and to lobby for federal assistance for farmers in that area. Last week Queensland declared large parts of the state to be drought affected."
"Over the past couple of weeks I have been all over western Victoria and the picture is quite stark - poor rainfall over the last six months, record lows in some areas, and a forecast for more of the same. It must be obvious to the Premier, given that this is part of his own electorate. He cannot have missed the fact that there is a lot of heat and drought affecting his electorate."
Mr BARBER (Northern Metropolitan) -- My adjournment matter is for the attention of the Minister for Agriculture and Food Security, and I am requesting that he take action to have western Victoria declared to be drought affected, and to lobby for federal assistance for farmers in that area. Last week Queensland declared large parts of the state to be drought affected. Over the past couple of weeks I have been all over western Victoria and the picture is quite stark -- poor rainfall over the last six months, record lows in some areas, and a forecast for more of the same. It must be obvious to the Premier, given that this is part of his own electorate. He cannot have missed the fact that there is a lot of heat and drought affecting his electorate.
Mr BARBER (Northern Metropolitan) -- My question is to the Minister for Health. Last sitting week I asked the minister about the impact of various burn-offs on air quality in Albury-Wodonga. I also sent him the data from the New South Wales Environment Protection Authority about the levels of air pollution in that area. This government does not monitor air quality in regional areas.
In addition there is a study that was undertaken by the New South Wales department of health during the 2003 bushfires on the impact of smoke pollution on emergency department presentations at Albury Base Hospital.
I ask whether the minister has been able to determine whether the levels of air pollution occurring in Albury-Wodonga are likely to cause impacts on human health and even the daily death rate, and whether that creates a requirement for him to act under the Health Act 1958?
Mr BARBER (Northern Metropolitan) -- I move:
That amendment C194 to the Melbourne planning scheme be revoked.
The purpose of this motion is to revoke amendment C194 to the Melbourne City Council planning scheme. This amendment was made by the Minister for Planning over and against the wishes of the Melbourne City Council, which has ongoing responsibility for ensuring good planning outcomes within its area.
The reason the minister moved that amendment to override the council was that he sought to approve a particular development that would not have complied with the existing planning rules, the planning rules that the council was putting forward, to wit, on Southbank, a 108-level tower with an overall height of 388 metres containing 646 residential apartments, 288 hotel rooms, 500 square metres of office space, 2150 square metres of retail space, 600 car spaces, 236 bicycle spaces, and with the existing facades of the two buildings there retained, a basement supermarket and storage area, and 11 levels of above-ground car park.