The Port Stephens community has continued to fight the planned sale of the Mambo Wetlands by the Department of Education.
A 'for sale' sign appeared on the grounds on May 6th, with the local Mambo Wanda Wetlands Landcare committee saying the weren't given a heads up beforehand.
Port Stephens MP Kate Washington has firmly opposed the Baird Government's planned sale of the property, saying it is vitally important it doesn't enter private hands.
FOR SALE: Wetlands to be sold [Photo: TRRA]
Local residents had the opportunity to have their say on Thursday 26th May with a local forum held at Horizons Golf Resort at Salamander Bay.
Education Minister Adrian Piccoli and Environment Minister Mark Speakman were both invited to attend the forum, with letters and email from Washington's office going unanswered.
|The Wetlands' sale sign|
[Source: Port Stephens Examiner]
"We just simply can't afford it, for the sake of the koalas and all the other threatened species that live within that parcel of land," says Washington
"We need to, as a community, have a really strong voice and let the Government know that we do not want this land placed into private hands," she said.
The sale of the Wetlands would be another asset the Baird Government have sold off since the 2015 election, with up to $3 billion of public assets being sold as of 2016 since the Coalition victory in 2011.
Sold assets include Bligh House for $58 million and the Australian Technology Park for $263 million.
Money raised from the sale of buildings considered to be old or misused will be redirected to constructing new infrastructure and housing.
The State Opposition have been critical of the recent litany of public assets the Government have sold into private hands with Shadow Finance Minister Clayton Barr saying Premier Mike Baird was "addicted to the sugar hit" of selling off assets.
"Whether it is electricity assets or Government property, they are happy to accept the short-term gain and ignore the long-term pain," he told The Sydney Morning Herald.