NSW Nationals Leader Dugald Saunders and Shadow Minister for Water Steph Cooke will introduce a Bill to protect Water NSW and local water utilities from privatisation.
“Access to drinking water for people in regional NSW should be the same as for people living in Sydney,” Mr Saunders said.
“The Premier had an opportunity to show he will govern for all of NSW, not just for Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong – he has failed, so we are now taking action to right that wrong.”
Ms Cooke has lodged a Notice of Motion to introduce the Constitution Amendment (Water NSW and Local Water Utilities) Bill 2023 to rectify the two-tiers of protection for water supply created by the NSW Labor Government.
“It will mean Water NSW and local water utilities throughout regional New South Wales will be protected from privatisation in the same way as Sydney Water and Hunter Water now are.”
Ms Cooke said her Bill follows passage of the Government’s Constitution Amendment (Sydney Water and Hunter Water) Bill 2023 which failed to include all water assets in the state.
It would amend the Constitution Act 1902, providing assurance that all water assets in New South Wales are to remain in public hands.
“There are 1.85 million people who obtain their water through local water utilities throughout regional New South Wales, and they too deserve confidence about the future of their water supply.
“Similarly, Labor failed to protect assets of Water NSW, including Warragamba Dam which stores about 80 per cent of Sydney’s water supply.
“Having spoken extensively with local water utilities and other providers in recent weeks, I hope to have the support of the government and crossbench so we can resolve the protection of end-to-end water supply in our state properly.”