Member for Macquarie Fields, Anoulack Chanthivong MP, has launched a scathing attack on NSW Education Minister, Adrian Piccoli, after it was revealed that more than $5 million of public money was being wasted on a ‘consultancy goldmine’ and spin doctors to fund the relocation of Hurlstone Agricultural High School and its replacement at Glenfield.
A total of $5,786,753 is being spent over four years by the Baird Liberal Government as it sells off the Hurlstone Farm and relocates the school to the Hawkesbury. The move is strongly opposed by Mr Chanthivong MP, who has introduced a Bill to the NSW Parliament in an effort to protect the school’s future at Glenfield and stop the sale of the Farm for more housing.
“The Coalition Government is squandering millions of dollars on spin doctors, contracts and consultancies for design, project management and a name change for a school that they once defended like knights in shining armour.
“Shamefully, underneath that armour, there was only ever hypocrisy and Piccoli’s only interest in Hurlstone was in selling it. The people of south western Sydney have been taken for a ride. I won’t have a bar of it! Stop wasting public money on the spin! Leave Hurlstone where it is. Leave the Hurlstone Farm alone,” Mr Chanthivong said.
Mr Chanthivong said Piccoli’s backflip on the issue was worthy of an Olympic gold medal and brought into question his credibility.
“The Minister must be held to account for his deceit and backflip. Now, Piccoli is wasting millions of dollars in public money on a goldmine of consultancies and spin doctors to relocate Hurlstone and sell the Farm, a move he once fiercely opposed. It’s this sort of rogue behaviour that undermines the public’s trust of politicians, which as recent events have shown, is already tinkering on the edge,” Mr Chanthivong said.
He added that Piccoli’s mismanagement of the new education IT system had seen that bill blow out by a staggering $269 million. “Sadly, it appears our community will pay the price for Piccoli’s incompetence. What school will be sold next to pay for this Minister’s bungles or to line consultants’ pockets? The fight continues. Hands Off Hurlstone!”