Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) — I rise to speak briefly on the Racing Amendment (Modernisation) Bill 2017, which makes changes to the government's arrangements for Racing Victoria. It essentially gives the Minister for Racing the power to appoint directors of Racing Victoria following consideration of an advisory panel report. The advisory panel will include the Secretary of the Department of Justice and Regulation; a nominee by the minister; a nominee by Victoria Racing Club, Melbourne Racing Club and the Moonee Valley Racing Club; a nominee by Country Racing Victoria; and a nominee appointed jointly by industry body members which, I understand, is essentially the same groups that were directly appointing the directors in the first place. However, this bill gives the minister direct control to action further powers in regard to the board.
Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) — What a cowardly act by the state government to announce its decision to retain the Punt Road public acquisition overlay at 10 minutes to 5 on Friday afternoon, the dumping ground for bad news. Make no mistake: this is a broken promise by Labor. I read from a media release from just before the last election titled 'Punt Road residents ignored by Napthine', with quotes from the then Labor candidate:
Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) — I rise briefly to speak on the amendments that have come from the other place in regard to the Commercial Passenger Vehicle Industry Bill 2017. We will be supporting these amendments because we believe that the reduction to a $1 levy is much fairer. We thought the initial estimates from the government in terms of revenue that would be raised from this levy were very conservative and we believe that the $1 levy will still meet the government's needs in terms of the compensation they will be paying.
QUESTION ON NOTICE — Mr Hibbins to ask the Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation —
With reference to the review of the Liquor Control Reform Act 1998:
(1) Is section 9A(3)(b) of the Act forming part of the review.
(2) When will the review be completed.
Mr HIBBINS — I also condemn the government for voting against the Greens 'metre matters' bill that came before this house recently. All states are now moving towards a mandatory passing distance for vehicles from cyclists. We need to start taking cyclist safety seriously, and the government can do that by passing that legislation.
Mr HIBBINS — It is time to ban the plastic bag. Support continues to grow from communities and local councils. Both Port Phillip and Stonnington councils have passed motions in support of banning single-use plastic bags. I urge the government and opposition to support the Greens private members bill that we have put forward to ban single-use plastic bags. It is time to join the war on waste and stop plastic bags and plastic pollution from ending up in our bay, rivers and oceans.
Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) — I would like to thank the Toorak Road South Yarra traders association for having me at their recent traders meeting on crime and the Stonnington police for attending and providing insight into their role and how local businesses can work together to both prevent and respond to crime. Local police have attended similar events, most recently at Carlisle Street but previously at the Horace Petty public housing estate and for residents who live in apartment buildings in Prahran.
Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) (By leave) — I would like to say a few words on behalf of myself and the member for Melbourne. It is safe to say, Ray, that you have been here a lot longer than we have, and in fact a lot longer than most members. One of our first questions to you was: 'How does one actually become the Clerk, and how does one get their head around these particular and peculiar rules, procedures and precedents while at the same time carrying out your duties of providing advice to us and ensuring the orderly running of the house and the Parliament?'. Having been here just a short time, I can say that not only have you done that but you have done it incredibly well. I think yours is a really great story of commitment to the public service, because whilst members are in the limelight and seeking the limelight, it is you and your team who are really the unsung heroes of this Parliament in making sure that our Parliament and our democracy work.
Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) — I rise to speak on the State Taxation Acts Amendment Bill 2017 and the amendments that have come from the Legislative Council. The Greens welcome the removal of the property valuations part of this bill because a number of councils contacted me and my Greens colleagues expressing their concern with this section of the bill, which changes the revaluation cycle from every two years to every year and transfers that responsibility from municipalities to the valuer-general. Their main concerns around this particular aspect are that there was no consultation at all with the local government sector over these changes, that it would cost councils more having to contribute to the cost of the revaluations taking place every year instead of every two years and that by transferring the revaluations to the valuer-general from councils it will have serious staffing and industrial relations implications and may result in the retrenchment of some council staff. We welcome it being taken out of this bill.
Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) — (12 876) My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Public Transport, and the action I seek is for new E-class trams to be rolled out on tramlines that use St Kilda Road on routes 3, 5, 6, 58, 64 and 67. These tram routes are experiencing overcrowding and are operating over capacity, particularly between 8 and 9 in the morning, according to the latest data. One of the first campaigns that I ran when newly elected was to lobby the government to manufacture 50 new high-capacity trams to reduce overcrowding and create jobs. Whilst the government has subsequently ordered 30 new trams as part of its rolling stock strategy, it only maintains the existing 10 trams a year production when this could be doubled for 20 trams a year. The remaining 70 new trams in the rolling stock strategy are so far unfunded and are not all due to be on the track until 2021.