New Independents will review the forced amalgamation of councils

Gosford and Wyong to merger discussion

The New Independent team for the September Central Coast Council election has described the action of the NSW Liberal government as farcical in their handling of Council amalgamations over the past two years.
“Central Coast residents have had to endure the pain and confusion of what was effectively a forced amalgamation to serve the Liberal government’s interests,” said Ms Jane Smith, independent candidate for Gosford East Ward.
“We have seen chaos within Council over the last 15 months, with restructures forcing local staff with local knowledge to lose their jobs, and most recently, a vote of no confidence in senior Council Executive by hundreds of Council workers.
“Reports of the backflip by Premier Berejiklian on council mergers in Sydney now leave the Central Coast in limbo,” she said.
“We will now have a ‘super council’ servicing over 330,000 residents with 15 Councillors, whilst Hunters Hill Council will serve approximately 14,000 residents with 7 Councillors”, said Gary Chestnut, Independent candidate for Gosford West ward.
“It is clear that the amalgamated Council results in less representation for the interests of residents and ratepayers, and that appears to be exactly what the NSW Liberal government wanted to achieve”.
“The majority of former Gosford and Wyong Councillors did nothing to stand up to the State Government decree that Gosford and Wyong Councils should merge.
“Our team will call for a rigorous assessment of the pros and cons of the amalgamation and a poll as part of the 2020 Council election”, said Mr. Chestnut.
“Keep party politics out of our Council,” said Ms Smith.
“We need new Independent Councillors for the Central Coast that don’t just toe the party line but will stand up for local residents, ratepayers and communities,” she said.

Source:
Media release, Jul 30
Jane Smith, Central Coast New Independents

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