Saturday, 26 August 2017

Blacktown City Council - Media Release - Blacktown City Council Backs NRMA


24 August, 2017

The Mayor of Blacktown City, Councillor Stephen Bali backs calls by the NRMA for improved NSW Government funding for local roads.

“The NSW government puts a choke on income, has its own backlog of state-owned roads that it is not maintaining and, as the NRMA rightly says, is shirking its funding responsibility across the state,” Mayor Bali said.

“There are many councils across the state with larger road maintenance backlogs than Blacktown, yet we all share the same problem and fully support the NRMA’s call.”

“Blacktown City Council has managed to reduce its backlog by 17 per cent – one of the best results in the metropolitan area – but at a cost to other areas of operation.

The NRMA rightly identifies rate-capping as a major cause of Councils getting behind in road maintenance, Mayor Bali said.
“When the state government quite unfairly puts a state-wide cap of 1.5 per cent on council rate rises, which is significantly less than the CPI, it’s almost as if they are trying to deliberately sabotage the economic performance of the Local Government sector.

“Blacktown has a challenge, because its roads stretch from Sydney to beyond Adelaide yet the NSW Government can’t even provide the arterial roads we need in our local area to support a 200,000 population growth.

“There needs to be a major road needs audit which properly addresses how we best keep up with Sydney’s rapidly growing population as it approaches 8 million people.

“It’s all very well for Premier Berejiklian to talk about bullet trains while the rest of us are moving at a snail’s pace on clogged and choked roads,” Mayor Bali said.

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