Update Issue 150

Update Issue 150

8 December 2015

Harbourside Tower, Westconnex is Back, Pill Testing, Woman of the Year 2016 and Give a Dog a Bone

Read more for an update of the work I have been doing in the parliament and the community, and information on how you can get involved in local activities.


I have asked the planning minister to reject the proposal to redevelop the low rise Harbourside Shopping Centre at Darling Harbour into a commercial office tower. The tower would block integration with Pyrmont and privatise the waterfront, contrary to the government’s stated aims for Darling Harbour. The building was only purchased two years ago and if approved would demonstrate ad hoc planning at its worst. My letter is HERE.


Another WestConnex EIS is on exhibition, this one for the M5 link between St Peters and the existing M5 East Motorway east of King Georges Road. It involves two nine-kilometre tunnels: one three lanes the other five lanes wide, though this EIS would allow use of two lanes in each. There will be interchanges, tolling infrastructure, ventilation stacks, road widening, portals, a road bridge and a motorway control centre, as well as environment loss including the Green and Golden Bell Frog’s critical habitat.

The project will bring more traffic into the city and inner west, with the whole 33 kilometre project resulting in only 20 per cent bus time improvements for six services in the AM peak and six services in the PM peak when it first opens. This is an unsustainable approach to transport planning and I continue to argue that we need to invest in mass public transport. I encourage you to make a submission. Information is HERE.  


The massive law and order budget has not stopped people taking drugs, instead it makes them take substances of unknown strength and makeup at once to avoid detection. The Ombudsman slammed drug detection operations for criminalising low-level users and failing to impact traffickers and suppliers. In one week two people have died and it’s time we move to an approach based on evidence and harm minimisation. I have asked the Premier to enable pill testing as done in European countries including Switzerland, Germany, Spain and France. My letter is HERE.


Nominations for 2016 Woman of the Year are open until 13 January. You can suggest women for the Premier’s Award, Regional Woman of the Year, Community Hero, Young Woman of the Year and Aboriginal Woman of the Year. Details available HERE.


There’s still time to make donations to the Give a Dog a Bone, Keep Kitty Happy Christmas appeal. Drop donations to my office at 58 Oxford Street Paddington by 15 December. More information and drop off locations HERE.

Let's work together to celebrate and protect our great city!