Minister for Local Government Shelley Hancock has today refused to accept responsibility for missing a self-appointed deadline to identify a long-term solution for Stockton’s erosion crisis, but instead has chosen to blame everyone else.
Last year the Minister promised the Stockton community that a long-term solution to the erosion crisis would be found by the end of 2019, but under questioning from the NSW Opposition in Parliament today has now blamed Newcastle council for her own misleading statement and flip-flopped on what her responsibilities are.
The Minister also accused the Opposition of not understanding the process, although it appears she is the one who is confused.
On 2 October 2019 Minister Hancock told ABC Radio, “There are a whole lot of options on the table. I want them all looked at and estimated before the end of the year and then a solution found.”
Today she backflipped by saying, “There is nothing further I can do unless the council indicates they have completed their Coastal Management Program.”
Mr Crakanthorp said that Minister did nothing but deflect and continue to mislead.
“The Minister was called out on her own missed deadline, but decided that she would blame everyone else rather than admit she has failed the people of Stockton,” he said.
“Which is it? If a long-term solution can’t be found until the completion of the Coastal Management Program, why did the Minister promise the people of Stockton five months ago that she wanted all options looked at and a solution found by the end of 2019?
“This Minister clearly didn’t understand the process when she made that commitment to Stockton last year and has had to backflip, yet today chose to accuse the Opposition of not doing their research instead.
“The Minister needs to make up her mind, stop misleading the community and find a solution for Stockton.”