Greens press release: Your rights are being stripped away

There are moves taking place right now to strip away the rights of every Penrith resident to have a say in how this community grows and works.
Nanjing Night Net

No 1 the great electricity swindle.

All of us are painfully aware of the price hikes in electricity charges over the last four years. Well here it is in context – since 2009 the NSW state government has increased revenue by a whopping 60% by simply raising electricity prices, noting that the carbon tax was a measly 8.9% of this. So for 2012-2013 the State government will take an extra $515 from every household as increased revenue – they say that this ‘extra cost’ is needed to fix poles and wires, well it is NOT, this money is going directly into state revenue, it is in effect a hidden great big tax on NSW homes.

How has this come about? It’s really quite simple, the state government owns and regulates the electricity network businesses and as such simply revenue raise when it feels like it.

No 2 the great property swindle.

What has this got to do with your rights being stripped away? The state government’s Minister for Planning, Brad Hazard MP, has recently released a green paper that recommends changes to the current planning laws. Page 85 says that the NSW government will control the whole process, just like they do with electricity charges. “The NSW Government will establish a formal NSW CEO Group with clear accountability for the delivery of approved strategic plans, including infrastructure coordination and provision across the State“ and “that members of this group will be appointed by the state government”.

What does this mean for us? It means none of us will have any rights to disagree or contest any planning proposal no matter how it may affect us, or our neighbours. Page 66 says that “existing appeal rights under the act will be retained”, however there is no explanation about how the so called merit appeal rights will function. A developer, for example, can propose rezoning but there are no legislated rights for the public – that is YOU. What is worse, your council may have no say in matters because once a strategic plan is put in place by the State Government there is no avenue of appeal. The four major impacts of this move will”

“Take Democracy out of Planning”

“Further Water Down Planning Controls”

“Shift Infrastructure Costs to Existing Residents”

“Always Deliver for the Developer”

Community Consultation

NSW elected the Liberals into our state parliament because Barry said he would listen to the people and consult with the community. SO how long will we have to consult on this massive piece of legislation that will change the very foundation of planning in this State – a mere four weeks.

This piece of developer friendly legislation is being rushed through while Councils are in the process of elections – in fact they are all in caretaker mode. Elections are on 8th September and four weeks later 8th October council submissions close on this so-called Green Paper.

The people of Penrith are being swindled by this Liberal State government and your rights are being stripped away before your very eyes. The worst aspect of this theft of people’s rights is that not one of our Liberal or “independent Liberal” candidates in Penrith is voicing a single concern on your behalf. Indeed the hordes of real estate agents standing for council this time around are rubbing their hands in glee.

More than ever you need to consider very carefully where you put your vote on Saturday 8th September.

Patrick Darley-Jones

0420 656 579

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.