What’s brown and sticky? Stay with me here…

PARTIES have begun to roll out their pre-election sweeteners in the countdown to October’s territory election, writes political reporter BELINDA STRAHORN. Her TRAIL MIX column will keep you up to date with all the political tidbits in the race to rule the territory.

What’s hidden behind secret land-swap values?

"I cannot recall the ACT government consulting the Hughes community, of its intention to convert urban open space, in a prominent, elevated position in Hughes, into a housing estate for foreign missions as the price for reclaiming two acres of lake bottom," writes columnist JON STANHOPE.

Is Barr the only hope for Canberra’s planning future?

"What will it take for Andrew Barr to realise how easy it is to work with residents and through that partnership, have a city that all of us could be proud of?" muses "Canberra Matters" columnist PAUL COSTIGAN.

It’s all parties, parties, parties from here… 

To reduce FOMU during this ACT election campaign (fear of missing updates), our new column TRAIL MIX by "CityNews" political reporter BELINDA STRAHORN will keep you up to date with all the political tidbits in the race to rule the territory.

Crazy times and why this poll is worth watching!

This year’s ACT election won’t look like any other. Parties have a big task ahead persuading undecided voters they have what it takes to lead through a changed environment. Indeed, heading to the ballot box may look entirely different too, says "CityNews" political reporter BELINDA STRAHORN.

Don’t surrender West Basin to the developers

"Water’s-edge projects, such as that proposed for West Basin, will destroy the current habitat, remove access for ordinary Canberrans and concentrate the benefits in the hands of a few. UnAustralian!" writes political columnist MICHAEL MOORE.

ACT cuts deliver longest surgery waits in Australia

"The backlog in elective surgery has very little to do with the COVID-19 pandemic and almost everything to do with savage cuts to the ACT health budget by the ALP and the Greens over the last six years," writes columnist JON STANHOPE.

Who can resist the promise of ‘signalising’?

"Canberra Matters" columnist PAUL COSTIGAN has spotted some odd signs around the town...

The land deal the government doesn’t want you to know about

"What Jon Stanhope was hoping to uncover through a freedom of information request were the details of the deal that was struck between the NCA and the ACT government. He received a 30-page document with about 23 pages completely blank," writes "Canberra Matters" columnist PAUL COSTIGAN. 

Political spinners give lie to the science

"Canberra continues to be degraded through ad hoc regulations, through loopholes that developers exploit and by planning regulators who are very good at the job they do – looking the other way," writes "Canberra Matters" columnist PAUL COSTIGAN. 

Barr bags out Geocon’s Kingston tower

"PEOPLE across Canberra stared at the drawings last week and simply could not believe it. Surely, Geocon’s proposal for inner Kingston is a joke?" writes "Canberra Matters" columnist PAUL COSTIGAN.

When developers push the planning envelope

"Two current examples highlight the problems we have in planning and development. To what extent do the governments and the planning systems counter the greed of developers?" asks MICHAEL MOORE. 

Treasurer preens as health and housing founder

"The ACT has averaged a deficit of 5.8 per cent in each of the last eight years while all other jurisdictions including the NT recorded across the same years an average operating surplus of between 1.4 per cent and 3.9 per cent," writes JON STANHOPE.

More voting options as ACT faces ‘safe’ election

"At a time when other governments internationally are making it harder for people to vote, Gordon Ramsay is setting some new standards in the opposite direction," writes political columnist MICHAEL MOORE.

Stop the tram and start caring for the community 

"By averaging the level of debt accumulated over the eight years before the arrival of the coronavirus, the ACT government has in each of those years spent, on average, around $475 million more than it has earned," writes columnist JON STANHOPE.

Sometimes a politician gets it right – well, almost

"In my reading of the committee’s report it becomes obvious that whatever the chief planner thought he was going to do, he did not do it," writes "Canberra Matters" columnist PAUL COSTIGAN.

Despite the deaths, the attorney snubs families

“In each of the three cases, a person in the care and under the control of the state had died. There cannot be any greater failing,” writes columnist JON STANHOPE.

How poor planning is turning Canberra toxic

“There’s a long list of planning and development issues that community groups are grappling with now. Each is an astonishing example of how this city is being slowly rubbished through a lack of good governance,” writes “Canberra Matters” columnist PAUL COSTIGAN. 

Pork barrelling begins as opposition fights for air

"The government will be carefully planning to orchestrate announcement after announcement across each of the portfolios. Many of the announcements will be about where our taxpayers’ money is going to be spent next," writes political columnist MICHAEL MOORE.

Barr sullies virus recovery with pokie politics

"Andrew Barr’s hostility to poker machines has not extended to refusing to accept funding from the proceeds of poker machines owned by the ACT Labor Party or the CFMEU," writes political columnist JON STANHOPE.

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