With the NSW Treasurer due to deliver the 2022-23 Budget on Tuesday 21 June, Ms Yasmin Catley MP – Member for Swansea has written to Government Ministers requesting that they fund key projects based in Lake Macquarie as part of this budget.
One of these projects is the investment in the construction of more social and affordable housing stock in Lake Macquarie, along with facilitating more residential land releases. The region is experiencing a housing and homelessness crisis, with Lake Macquarie having the second longest waiting list for social housing in regional NSW.
Lacking public transport services in the region is also a major issue. This is due to the axing of the former 350 bus service by Keolis Downer in 2018. The removal of this service has dramatically increased the travel times for local commuters.
The Cams Wharf, Catherine Hill Bay, Murrays Beach and Nords Wharf communities are particularly impacted by a lack of public transport services.
There is only one bus service – route 99, which operates twice-daily in each direction via Catherine Hill Bay on weekdays, and only one northbound service and two southbound services on Saturdays. There are no bus services at all on Sundays or public holidays. For this reason these communities are heavily reliant on private vehicles for transportation, and those who do not drive face social isolation.
Ms Catley also made a submission on the dredging of Swansea Channel. Swansea Channel is the only entry and exit point into Lake Macquarie, the largest salt water lake in the Southern Hemisphere. However, consistent shoaling makes it difficult for vessels to navigate this waterway.
In addition, Ms Catley has urged the government to provide funding for Chapman Oval and Reids Reserve. These are both popular local parks that are regularly used by the local community. Despite this, facilities have become outdated and urgent repairs need to take place to ensure public safety.
Furthermore, Yasmin has sought funding to upgrade local sporting facilities.
Ms Yasmin Catley MP – Member for Swansea said ‘the completion of these projects is important to Lake Macquarie residents as they will improve their everyday lives’.
‘I urge the Government to closely consider these submissions and provide funding to these projects in the 2022-23 State Budget’.