THE state Liberal government broke a major election promise when it told voters they would have more say over neighbouring developments, claims Labor candidate for Drummoyne Tom Hore.
Mr Hore said the broken promise on development is a key issue in the electorate, with voters stunned they’ve been denied a voice on developments ranging from high-rises in Rhodes to unexpected, next-door neighbour redevelopments in heritage areas like Drummoyne and Concord West.
He said the government-funded “pro-developer” planning panels readily give approval to projects that meet a government criteria – regardless of community objections – while private certifier approvals robbed councils and residents of the power to reject controversial home redevelopments.
“Inappropriate development and overdevelop are the big issues in this electorate and what is happening is the complete reverse of what was promised by government politicians at the last election,” he told The Weekly Times.
“Residents are waking up to find redeveloped homes going up right next door to where they live, taking away their privacy and overshadowing their backyards and they are powerless to do anything about it because it has been approved by a private certifier hired by a developer or approved by a planning panel.”Tom Hore, Drummoyne Labor candidate at the 2019 NSW Election
A TAFE teacher in Architectural Drafting, Mr Hore said the bigger the development, the smaller the opportunity to oppose it.
“We are looking at huge developments like the Rhodes East Development which was approved without any local infrastructure to support it and without even the expansion of the local railway station,” he said.
“My concern now is overdevelopment along Parramatta Road and Victoria Road as both of these roads are already at a standstill in peak hour.”
Of particular concern is the proposed expansion of the Gladesville Bridge Marina.
“It is proposed to be double the size of the current marina and local residents are strongly opposed to it because of the loss of on street parking, an increase in traffic, an increase in noise and the environmental impact it will have on the Parramatta River and the impact of ferries and boats who will have to navigate around it,” he said.
“I am supporting the residents’ protest campaign, absolutely!”
He said a Michael Daley led Labor government would stop the “pro-developer” policy of the Liberal government and is genuinely committed to giving constituents a meaningful say.
“Our first action will be to stop the spot rezoning this government has pushed through to benefit developers and then we will put planning powers back in the hands of councils and communities where people can once again have a say if they want to object to a high rise up the road or the overdevelopment next door to where they live.”
Mr Hore acknowledged the contribution made by his opponent, Liberal MP for Drummoyne John Sidoti in winning funding for Concord Hospital and his work to improve the Parramatta River foreshore but added it was too little, too late.
“The hospital development should have happened years ago and all that is happening there right now is the long overdue removal of hazardous material including asbestos,” he said.
“With the Parramatta River, Labor will go much further and create two new beaches.”
Labor will also focus on job creation in essential services that include health care and aged care.
“Michael Daley has announced 4,900 new jobs in the hospital sector alone and I’m delighted the Shadow Minister for TAFE Pru Car was in Ryde earlier this month to announce free TAFE courses in subjects like aged care and electrical trades,” he said.
“We need properly trained people in these vital services and these highly trained people deserve jobs.”
The Weekly Times asked Mr Hore how he sees himself as a new MP for Drummoyne.
“While I want to engage in policy in a Michael Daley government, I will put the needs of my constituents first and be out and about in the electorate.
“I’ll enthusiastically raise their issues in parliament but I’ll also be here to help them.”