Yesterday, I met with the Minister for Land and Property the Hon Melinda Pavey and the Minister for the Environment the Hon Matt Kean to discuss the future of the Killalea State Park. We were also joined by members of the Save Killalea Alliance.
In 2010, as the then Liberal candidate, I committed the NSW Government to oppose the then Labor Government’s proposed deal with Babcock and Brown for a major commercial development of the site. Babcock and Brown were a donor to the NSW Labor Party.
Earlier in the year, I wrote to both Ministers arguing that in order to protect this asset in perpetuity, the asset should be moved from Reflections Holiday Parks to NSW National Parks.
I have also spoken with the traditional owners who are keen to secure the long-term future of the site to preserve the cultural heritage and significance for Aboriginal people.
At the meeting, both Ministers agreed to work with me to pursue the transfer of the park from the NSW Lands portfolio to NSW National Parks.
This park is very much the lungs of the southern Illawarra. It has enormous environmental, cultural and tourism significance.
As part of further discussions with the NSW Government, I will be seeking to ensure that any future model involves greater community input to ensure interests groups and stakeholders have their views heard and respected. This includes further improvements to the park such as the campsite and investments that provide greater access for people with disabilities.
I thank the NSW Government for their in-principle agreement to transfer the site and I look forward to working with the NSW Government to provide greater certainty for the future of this unique and stunning local asset.
Specifically, I would also like to thank Dr Jodie Edwards and the Save Killalea Alliance for working with me on this important project.