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Sydney candidates – NSW election 2019

Fiona Douskou – Small Business Party
I am running for the seat of Sydney to become a new voice for the residents and businesses in our community. We have had years of torment through poor government planning and no one has stood up for us – this needs to change. I will remove payroll and land tax, cut stamp duty, cut red tape, and slash energy prices, as well as: fighting overdevelopment and returning suitable parking to our area; repealing the lockout laws safely, to return business but keep our people safe; and standing up to ensure the light rail fail never happens again.

Sydney is the city with the third most expensive housing market in the world. What housing policies does your party have to address the problems that face people who are not adequately catered for by the commercial market?
We have released a comprehensive housing affordability policy removing stamp duty for pensioners and retirees, cuts the rates for others, and outlines plans to implement a staggered payment for stamp duty – like HECS. This reduces the upfront burden to purchasing a home across NSW and helps bring prices down.

How should planning responsibilities be organised between The City of Sydney Council and state government, so that communities can have a greater say in the development changes in their local area?
DA decisions have now been removed from the hands of councillors, we have a situation where residents get less input into planning decisions than ever. This needs to change and go back the way it was. The community is being gagged and democracy destroyed. Local planning is a community right.

With redevelopment projects throughout the inner city, how will your party identify and fund infrastructure that needs to be provided to accommodate the increased population density?
Infrastructure needs better planning. We have seen with Light Rail and WestConnex situations where logic went out the window and people suffered. Successive governments ignored the planning studies they were given; they are doing it the wrong way around. First build the infrastructure, then the developments – the funding is already there.

How will your party balance residential amenity and safety within recent proposals to develop Sydney’s night time economy?
It’s important to have a vibrant city, but we shouldn’t force businesses to trade 24/7. Good planning allows both residents and businesses to live together – we need each other to have thriving communities. We need to be The Agents of Change, not create an us and them mentality.

Lyndon Gannon – Liberal Party of Australia
Lyndon was born and raised in Sydney’s inner west. Growing up with dyslexia, Lyndon is passionate about investing in education, especially special needs education, and Lyndon has seen the real difference made by the NSW Liberals’ record investment in schools and teachers. Lyndon worked for Marrickville Council as a street sweeper when he left school, and then moved on to working in both state and federal governments. As a small business owner and working in the hospitality industry, Lyndon is a strong believer in the importance of a strong economy to create jobs. He is also volunteers at the Woolloomooloo and Parramatta PCYCs, as part of their youth outreach boxing programs for at-risk teenagers.

Sydney is the city with the third most expensive housing market in the world. What housing policies does your party have to address the problems that face people who are not adequately catered for by the commercial market?
I live in the inner city and I know how hard it can be to get onto the property ladder. The government’s stamp duty concessions go a long way to take the pressure off young people looking to buy their first home and start a family. Plus the introduction of a foreign investor surcharge of an additional 8per cent on stamp duty helps locals get a fair go.

How should planning responsibilities be organised between the City of Sydney Council and the state government, so that the communities can have a greater say in the development changes in their local area?
The NSW Liberal government recognises the important role local character plays in strategic planning process for councils. Sydney is unique and I’m proud to support new tools introduced by the Department of Planning and NSW Planning Minister Anthony Roberts to help councils and their communities, recognise, enhance and celebrate local character. These tools include summaries of learnings from local character experts, guidelines, and the Local Character Overlay, which will supplement the LEP.

With redevelopment projects throughout the inner city, how will your party identify and fund infrastructure that needs to be provided to accommodate the increased population density?
The NSW Liberals & Nationals, with its strong economic management, has pulled this state out of debt and back into the black.  We have hundreds of infrastructure projects already in the pipeline and are in the financial position to earmark even more. The key to smart planning is about working with all the stakeholders, from the State Government, to the Greater Sydney Commission and Local Councils, but above all listening to what the community is telling us.

How will your party balance residential amenity and safety within recent proposals to develop Sydney’s night time economy?
The City of Sydney has to ensure a balance is struck between both night life and amenity for inner-city apartment dwellers. If elected, I will work closely with local councils to loosen red tape for cafes and bars and help promote the live music industry, while helping ensure local police have adequate resources, like CCTV, to deter and fight crime.

Alex Greenwich – Independent
I will be an independent voice in Parliament for a liveable, sustainable and progressive Sydney for all, working for fairness and equality, the natural environment and residential amenity. My priorities include climate change, homelessness and affordable housing, late-night culture, LGBTIQ equality, strata, open space, sustainable transport, education and animal welfare.

Sydney is the city with the third most expensive housing market in the world. What housing policies does your party have to address the problems that face people who are not adequately catered for by the commercial market?
I oppose inner city social housing sales and am pushing for 5,000 new social housing properties each year until 2026; a minimum mandatory 15 per cent social and affordable housing target for major redevelopments; a ban on the wholesale conversion of homes into short term lets; and the removal of no-ground evictions of renters.

How should planning responsibilities be organised between The City of Sydney Council and state government, so that communities can have a greater say in the development changes in their local area?
Elected councillors should make development decisions, with appointed panels used in circumstances like conflicts of interest. Councils should determine state development that is not critical state infrastructure. Councils should be able to levy for affordable housing without state approval.

With redevelopment projects throughout the inner city, how will your party identify and fund infrastructure that needs to be provided to accommodate the increased population density?
I prioritise active and public transport over roads. I support expanding the bicycle network to complete the missing links. I oppose loss of public green open and am pushing to expand public open green and recreation space. New schools, recreation and childcare facilities are needed in all new big redevelopments.

How will your party balance residential amenity and safety within recent proposals to develop Sydney’s night time economy?
Lockouts should be repealed for well managed venues and used to punish poor operators. To retain residential amenity and safety, we need all-night trains and saturation zones to prevent areas becoming hot spots for violence and anti-social behaviour. Residents go out, venues can be good neighbours: we need balanced laws that protect both.

Jonathan Harms – The Greens
The Greens will act on climate change, supporting publicly owned renewable energy generation to lower prices, and renewables for renters. We will safely end the lockout, while avoiding loss of amenity to locals or encouraging anti-social behaviour. We will support public education and an extra public high school in the eastern suburbs allowing a rational catchment area for the inner city high school. We will support pill testing to save lives. We will re-empower communities over planning decisions, expand support for social and public housing, domestic violence and mental illness and make this fair city fair for all of us.

Sydney is the city with the third most expensive housing market in the world. What housing policies does your party have to address the problems that face people who are not adequately catered for by the commercial market?
Greens support a coordinated housing ministry, with all related issues under a minister to implement a policy to achieve a universal housing system and improve rights and security for renters. We would build the supply of social and public housing and ensure access to emergency and long term supported accommodation for all who need it.

How should planning responsibilities be organised between The City of Sydney Council and state government, so that communities can have a greater say in the development changes in their local area?
Greens will restore powers stripped from local councils, abolishing planning panels and empowering communities for: affordable housing targets; democratised decisions; and more public spaces.

Greens will ensure Sydney cannot be targeted for more intense development until commitments are made for public transport, green open space, schools, hospitals and community facilities

With redevelopment projects throughout the inner city, how will your party identify and fund infrastructure that needs to be provided to accommodate the increased population density?
Greens will work in consultation with state planning authorities and local government to identify infrastructure needs and fund through government borrowing, preserving public ownership. We will bringing councils together to develop regional planning, with engagement by state government departments of health, education and transport.

How will your party balance residential amenity and safety within recent proposals to develop Sydney’s night time economy?
Greens will work with all stakeholders to ensure a balance between night time activities and residential amenity, including better late-night transport, sound proofing, smaller venues, etc.

Greens will assist things like the live music scene in Sydney, but will also implement evidence based planning strategies to prevent previous problems recurring

Jo Holder – Australian Labor Party
Jo has called Darlinghurst home for over 25 years, and is co-convenor of the Darlinghurst Resident Action Group. An art curator and art historian, she works to promote contemporary art, urban planning and architecture, and to protect our heritage. While our city is suffering from a lack of schools, crowded hospitals, and some of the most unaffordable housing in the world, the Liberals have their priorities all wrong, spending $2.4 billion to replace stadiums, and $1.5 billion moving the Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences. Only a NSW Labor government will prioritise schools and hospitals before stadiums, and save the Powerhouse. To achieve real change, we must change the government.

 

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