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Shack Leases

4 September 2018

The Hon. J.A. DARLEY (14:49): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking the Minister for Human Services, representing the Minister for Environment and Water, a question about shack leases.

Leave granted.

The Hon. J.A. DARLEY: In the government's election policy document, entitled 'Retaining shacks as part of vibrant holiday communities', they outlined that they will put an end to the practice of terminating departmental leases upon the death of the last person named on the lease. The government promised to expand eligibility requirements in order to provide renewable lease options to shacks situated on Crown land and for shacks within national parks. The government also indicated that they intended to investigate the freeholding of shacks located on Crown land. My questions to the minister are:

1. What progress is being made on the government's promise to provide renewable lease options to shacks on Crown land and within national parks?

2. Can the minister advise the intended time line for the implementation of this policy?

3. Does the government intend to now extend the policy to the freeholding of shacks on Crown land?

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (Minister for Human Services) (14:51): I thank the honourable member for his question and his ongoing interest in shacks in South Australia. As a number of honourable members would be aware, under the tenure of the previous Liberal administration, a number of shacks were provided with freeholding. The Labor Party, in government, took a rather strange view that a number of shacks that had not been provided freehold, and indeed probably the ones that had, were squatters and made a number of fatuous—

Members interjecting:

The PRESIDENT: Order! Allow the minister to complete her answer.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: —claims, I think particularly in relation to the South-East, the Glenelg River area, about rickety boardwalks and leaking—

The Hon. I.K. Hunter: And over river toilets and no public access.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: That's not true.

The Hon. I.K. Hunter: Rubbish!

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: If the honourable member had bothered to actually visit the site, he would have known—

The Hon. I.K. Hunter: Absolute rubbish!

The PRESIDENT: Minister, through me. Do not respond to the interjections from the Hon. Mr Hunter.

The Hon. D.W. Ridgway: Did you ever visit it? Did you leave the CBD?

The PRESIDENT: Minister, you're not helping either. Hon. Mr Ridgway, please be quiet.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: I should not have responded to the honourable member's out-of-order interjections.

The Hon. I.K. Hunter: No legs to stand on.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: I'm standing on two legs, thank you.

The Hon. I.K. Hunter: Borrowed ones.

The PRESIDENT: Minister, please continue your answer.

The Hon. D.W. Ridgway interjecting:

The PRESIDENT: Hon. Mr Ridgway, I want to listen to the minister.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK: I might start again. In relation to particularly the Glenelg River, a number of fatuous claims were made. I visited those sites several times and those comments have been completely unsubstantiated.

The Hon. Mr Darley's references to our policy are correct, that is, the content of our policy. The exact details in relation to the progress of implementing our policy, I will need to seek the details from the Minister for Environment in another place and bring back a response.


Answer to Question

16 October 2018

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (Minister for Human Services): The Department for Environment and Water has advised:

1. On 4 April 2018, a moratorium on the previous practice of automatically terminating departmental leases upon the death of the last person named on the lease was implemented. Further, all revaluations of shack sites were put on hold until the new policy is implemented.

The Department for Environment and Water (DEW) is engaging with key stakeholders to determine relevant criteria, eligibility, and processes to maintain a lease in return for upgrading shacks to meet contemporary safety, amenity, and environmental standards. Advice is being sought from the Valuer-General on the fair valuation for the sale of shack sites.

2. A draft policy will be released in the coming months for targeted consultation with key stakeholders. The shacks in the Coorong National Park and at Milang will be the first to be assessed against the new policy and it is envisaged that suitability assessment of these sites will commence in 2019.

3. The draft policy will address the relevant criteria, eligibility and process for freeholding of shacks on Crown land.