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Alex is committed to government transparency and accountability; protecting the natural and urban environments, open space and Sydney’s unique heritage; retaining inner city social and affordable housing; the humane treatment of animals; improving transport options; and fairness and equality for the LGBTI communities.
 

Alex's Update 225

Monday 10 July 2017

Privatisation Too Far, Powerhouse Progress, Paddington Bowling Club & Power Deregulation

Privatisation Too Far

Some services are best provided by governments and in Parliament I supported an Opposition motion to block a law that will enable the privatisation of Services NSW operations. Services NSW provides essential government services like registration of births, deaths, marriages, vehicles and business and licensing including medical assessments. I told Parliament it is not appropriate to let a for-profit company manage the private and personal information held by the service.

This follows the disgraceful privatisation of the lands title registry which risks titles fraud and increased costs for home buyers and sellers, and ongoing privatisation of the prison system, which can have serious consequences for inmates. My speech is HERE

Powerhouse Progress 

I believe the Powerhouse should stay in its current home where it has strong community support and is easily accessible. More of the amazing collection currently in storage should be on display.

While the government remains committed to a new museum in Parramatta, at recent hearings of the Legislative Council Inquiry into museums and galleries, the minister committed to including an option of retaining ‘cultural space’ at Ultimo, with a museum, gallery or performance space in the business case. Media reports suggest this includes partnership with other institutions and I hope that any agreement builds on the Powerhouse’s history as a science and technology centre.

You can register for updates on and input to the government’s plans HERE.   

Paddington Bowling Club

In response to my further questions about the now deserted former Paddington Bowling Club site, the minister says the clubhouse is secure and that the department inspected the site and asked the lessee to maintain the grounds. While the minister says that the lessee is complying with the lease conditions, adjacent residents report that the site is derelict and I will ask follow up questions following the next inspection, which is due soon.

My latest questions are HERE.   

Power Deregulation

Gas and electricity retail prices are increasing and gas prices have just been deregulated. Information on electricity is HERE. Information on gas is HERE.

Consumers now have to do a lot of investigating to find the best deals, which will depend on use, contract conditions and greenpower needs. See www.energymadeeasy.gov.au and have details of your electricity and gas bills to work out the best arrangement.

I opposed electricity privatisation in Parliament, raising concerns that energy prices would rise while entrenching NSW in a future of dirty coal. I’ve asked questions about increasing energy costs, pushed for consumer protections, incentives to make rental homes more energy efficient and to encourage better peak demand management. Following the latest price rises I intend to follow up with further questions when Parliament resumes. My work is HERE