NSW Liberals and Nationals Wage War on Cessnock City Council

Shadow Minister for Local Government, Greg Warren and State Member for the Electorate of Cessnock, Clayton Barr, have condemned the NSW Liberals and Nationals for bleeding the pockets of the Cessnock City community dry.

Documents obtained by NSW Labor under Freedom of Information laws show the cost to hold this September’s local government elections in Cessnock will rise by 45% to $418,185.

Mr Clayton Barr feared the cost would force Cessnock City Council to cut funds intended for other important community projects like roads.

The documents obtained by NSW Labor also showed 9 out of the 10 most affected communities were located in rural or regional NSW, while the 10 councils with the lowest rises (in terms of percentage) were all metropolitan-based councils.

TOP FIVE COUNCILS WITH THE LARGEST INCREASE

COUNCIL 2016/17 COST ($) 2020 COST ($) RISE (%)
Coolamon Shire 9,000 43,714 386
Cobar Shire 30,000 66,841 123
Cootamundra-Gundagai 73,000 160,860 120
Narromine Shire 38,000 82,094 116
Snowy Valleys 75,000 157,154 110

 

TOP FIVE COUNCILS WITH THE LOWEST INCREASE

COUNCIL 2016/17 COST ($) 2020 COST ($) RISE (%)
Campbelltown City 605,000 745,937 23
City of Ryde 449,000 554,324 23
Sutherland Shire 984,000 1,226,083 25
Cumberland 799,000 995,588 25
Northern Beaches 1,122,000 1,404,484 25

*2016/17 figures obtained via ipart.nsw.gov.au and 2020 costs obtained via GIPA*

“Local government elections are not profiteering exercises, they are solely designed to elect leaders to represent the community,” Mr Warren said.

“This rise in cost is a brazen and brash attack on every community throughout NSW.

“Every member of this Liberal-National Government who has allowed these costs blowouts to occur on their watch should hang their heads in shame – particularly those who hail from rural and regional NSW.”

Mr Clayton Barr MP added: “This unjust and enormous bill will wreak havoc in our community.”

“It shows the Liberals and Nationals are clearly out of touch not just with our community but with every community throughout NSW.

“I hold genuine fears that Cessnock City Council will be forced to slash services or raise rates to pay for the NSWEC’s services in September.”