Report into airport restrictions repeal Bill tabled

Warnervale Airport

Central Coast Member of the Legislative Council, Taylor Martin, has welcomed the Legislative Council Report into the Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) (WAR) Repeal Bill 2020, which was tabled in NSW Parliament on Monday, November 16.

Martin said the Inquiry provided another opportunity for locals from all sides to have their say on the future of the WAR Act 1996.

“The evidence received during the Inquiry was overwhelming that the WAR Act has served its purpose and is now past its use-by-date,” he said.

If passed by Parliament, the Bill will immediately remove the daily take off and landing cap for aircraft movements at Warnervale Airport while repealing the WAR Act 1996 in its entirety at a future point in time.

Chair of the Committee, Cate Faehrmann MLC, said this short but important Inquiry elicited stakeholder views and perspectives on both sides of the debate and provided valuable input into the Committee’s deliberations.

“While many stakeholders expressed support for the Bill, some raised significant concerns about any future expansion or redevelopment of the airport,” she said.

“In particular, the Committee noted concerns about aircraft noise and its impacts on amenity for residents under the flight path as well as environmental impact to the ecologically significant Porters Creek Wetland.

“On the other hand, Inquiry participants that supported the Bill were almost unanimous in their views on the WAR Act 1996, telling the Committee that it was duplicative of other legislation and served no apparent purpose.

“They pointed to the various environmental and land use zoning constraints in place which, in their view, either prevents or makes it extremely difficult to expand the airport,” Faehrmann said.

Taylor Martin MLC said he looked forward to the WAR Act being repealed in due course.

“Warnervale Airport is a vital asset for the Central Coast providing education and training opportunities, emergency services support and tourism opportunities,” he said.

“The repeal of the WAR Act will provide certainty to the Central Coast Aero Club, the general aviation industry, emergency services and the community.”

The Committee has recommended that the Legislative Council proceed to debate the Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Repeal Bill 2020 in Parliament and discuss the concerns identified through the Inquiry process.

Members of the Portfolio Committee No. 7 Planning and Environment which conducted the Inquiry are: Chair, Cate Faehrmann (The Greens); Deputy Chair, Mark Pearson (Animal Justice Party); Mark Buttigieg (Labor); Ben Franklin (Nationals); Shayne Mallard (Liberal); Taylor Martin (Liberal); and, Penny Sharpe (Labor).

Sue Murray