O’Farrell Liberals bullying NSW public servants to relocate so developer mates can drive Sydney sprawl

New South Wales Premier Barry O’Farrell presumes NSW voters came down in the last shower.  He certainly treats Sydneysiders as mugs.

No sooner has One Ball Bazza failed Thomas Kelly’s legacy by failing to enact coward punch legislation because of shoddy drafting, but Bazza deflects embarrassment by announcing a media front page change of subject.  But Bazza must be using media advisers because as a cuddly teddy bear he’s not that bright to conjure up such tactics.

So as there is no change to laws preventing more Kieran Loveridges coward punching more Thomas Kellys, Bazza in the past few days must have had a mighty distractive luncheon at surely Westfield lobbyists’  expense.  

And as Australian Water Holdings is increasingly exposed to corrupt figures and to large donations to the Liberal Party, perks and deals, O’Farrell is increasingly looking tainted.   Liberal Senator Arthur Sinodinos was a key informed player with AWH during the O’Beid period of influence between the NSW Government and vested interests. 

Corruption enquiries are underway at the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) involving Liberal Party fundraiser Nick Di Girolamo, an associate of the Obeid family.

The ICAC is examining allegations that the family of corrupt former Labor minister Eddie Obeid had a 30 per cent “secret shareholding” in AWH. Mr Obeid allegedly lobbied colleagues to favour the company, and attempted to get Mr Quill and his boss, Kerry Schott, sacked because they were standing in his way.

Just as NSW Labor has been proven corrupt, so too it looks are the NSW Liberals, and that is before revelations about Liberals Minister Chris Hartcher who is accused of receiving corporate donations for political favours.

Bazza has announced that he is relocating a number of NSW Government departments from the Sydney CBD to residential growth areas suggested by Westfield so they can build more shopping centres.  Westfield donated $150,000 to both Liberal and Labor before the last election, hedging their bets.

But of course this is not how the Liberal’s media spin reads in today’s polly lackie newspapers.  

No there was only the upsell with a few chosen resident fools, like Mark Geyer, described by Sydney’s leading tabloid, The Daily Telegraph, as “a proud westy” totally in support the government’s announcement.

So when was this “proud westy” approached to support Bazza’s announcement?     Was he approached by Telegraph journalists, or by Bazza’s spin doctors, or indeed by those agents of Westfield weeks ago as part of a strategically crafted joint media announcement?  Has this proud westie received inducements for his very public support of government agenda?

This is how The Daily Telegraph reported the story today:

Three thousand state public servant jobs moving to the west

(Exclusive John Lehmann, The Daily Telegraph, March 21, 2014)

Premier Barry O’Farrell today confirmed 3000 public sector jobs would be moved to Sydney’s west.

(Sounds like something Alan Joyce is about to do with QANTAS).

“Mark Geyer is a proud westy and wants more Government jobs relocated out west.

FOOTY great and long-term ‘westy’ Mark Geyer has backed The Telegraph’s report that 3000 public sector jobs will be relocated to Sydney’s west..

It comes after Premier Barry O’Farrell today confirmed his bold plan to boost the region’s economy which will also result in three new office buildings in Parramatta, Penrith and Liverpool.

The agencies identified to move from next year include:

  1. Ambulance Service of NSW, moving from Rozelle to North Parramatta;
  2. Department of Sport and Recreation, moving from Sydney Olympic Park to Penrith;
  3. Community Relations Commission and divisions within Family and Community Services, moving from Sydney’s CBD and Ashfield to Liverpool; and
  4. Office of Environment and Heritage, EPA and Office of State Revenue, moving from Hurstville, the CBD and existing Parramatta offices to be co-located in Parramatta.”
  5. (..thus far, so look out all NSW Government departments – you are on notice. No-one is safe.)

Democratic consultation anyone?  No, Liberal decision made, take your medicine!

That is, relocate west or accept redundancies, so we can employ 457 Labour, Asylum Labour, or just Offshored Labour through Liberal Party agents at KPMG/PWC.

O’Farrell’s spin message is riddled with euphemisms:

  • O’Farrells’ “decade of decentralisation” plan, which means that “this is just the beginning”.. for the NSW Public Service.
  • Many government agencies weren’t located in the right areas – O’Farrell noted that more than 800 environmental bureaucrats were located in CBD offices “where the closest tree is in Hyde Park’’ – relevance Bazza?
  • Supports western Sydney businesses (somehow)
  • Here in western Sydney, the potential of our citizens is limitless (meaning?)
  • “The relocation of these agencies will also provide more opportunities for western Sydney residents who want to work closer to where they live and help to reduce congestion in the Sydney CBD,’’ (provides a driver for sprawl to the Blue Mountains so NSW public servants can swamp property sales and car commute to Penrith from Lapstone, Glenbrook, Blaxland, from Brad Hazzard’s Faulconbridge Line and eventually from Blackheath)
  • “It will take several years for the relocations to be completed as the government will wait for leases on existing properties to expire and for new offices to be developed.”   (Westfield Group, The Urban Taskforce, and NSW Business Chamber will need time to draft and submit development submissions to Bazza at another harbourside luncheon.)
  • Mr O’Farrell said the government would seek expressions of interest for 5000sq m of new commercial space at Penrith, Parramatta and Liverpool. NSW Business Chamber chief executive Stephen Cartwright said the new locally based jobs would generate additional activity for western Sydney’s small businesses.
  • NSW Government inner Sydney property sites (owned by the people of NSW) which include the Ambulance Service at Rozelle, Department of Sport and Recreation at Sydney Olympic Park, Community Relations Commission and divisions within Family and Community Services in Sydney’s CBD and Ashfield, and the Office of Environment and Heritage/EPA/Office of State Revenue at Parramatta, Hurstville and the CBD – must all be worth a pretty penny to corporate developers linked to the Liberal Party and demanding election donation dividends.

Then the Telegraph editor, Paul Whittaker, slips in a comment suggesting that the newspaper’s own campaign influenced O’Farrell’s decision.

Whittaker is in effect a lobbyist, but for whose benefit?  Newspaper political campaigns are driven by more than simple revenue readership. Vested interest agenda again.   Australia is not the representative democracy as those in politics frequently tout it to be; between elections the Australian people continue to be over-ruled by a vested interest democracy.

“The move comes after The Daily Telegraph’s ‘Fair Go for the West’ campaign revealed more than 200,000 people are forced to travel away from western Sydney homes every day due to the lack of local jobs.”

This same campaign is driving a partisan push for a Badgerys Creek airport GDP sink hole, but they haven’t found a token westie supporter for it to date.

There is a calling for an honest, independent journalist to properly investigate all the connections between the players in this affair. Tragically, it usually comes down to the efforts of a citizen blogger.

Barry O’Farrell is a teddy bear politician, quick to make up his mind when hearing lobbyists deliver a good sell.  Bazza allows nightly gang crime to intimidate Sydney and excuses the shootings into homes as ‘targeted so ok”.

Bazza is a lightweight, a Fred Flintstone, a comic character, a joke.

Barry O'FarrellBaksheesh?