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Government’s Dividend Grab Puts Floods Works at Risk

Media Releases

State Member for Wallsend, Ms Sonia Hornery MP, will today move a Notice of Motion in NSW Parliament calling on the Government to forgo a larger dividend from Hunter Water in the 2018/19 financial year, as this would leave no money to pay for Wallsend flood mitigation works that are urgently needed.

Last month the Government flagged its intention to reduce the dividend it would take from the 2017/18 financial year from $135 million to $47 million. The Treasurer also then flagged his intention to take “better” dividends in coming years.

Ms Hornery will move a Notice of Motion asking the Government if any future increased dividends would place at risk Hunter Water’s ability to deliver on future flood mitigation works of its assets in the Wallsend CBD.

Quotes attributable to Member for Wallsend, Sonia Hornery

“This is a simple Notice of Motion and really gives the Government an opportunity to tell the people of Wallsend if it intends on committing funds to the flood mitigation works that are urgently required in the Wallsend CBD.”

“It is now more than 11 years since the 2007 Pasha Bulker storm and we are about to see the first stage of works undertaken by Newcastle Council, with the Tyrrell Street Bridge to be replaced and the pillars removed from the storm water drains.”

“But this needs to be complimented by works to improve the Hunter Water assets, the storm water drains, in the Wallsend CBD.”

“The amount of work required to be undertaken by Hunter Water would be jeopardised by any future increased dividend taken by the State Government.”

“If the Government are fair dinkum about helping reduce the risk of major flood damage in the Wallsend CBD, then they should commit to funding the Wallsend flood mitigation works and not taking an increased Hunter Water dividend.”

“That money should remain in the Hunter and be used for Hunter projects.”