RESIDENTS at a public meeting have criticised the former Wyong Shire Council for spending $20 million on Central Coast Airport while basic roads were “falling apart or incomplete”.
More than 100 people attended the meeting at Warnervale Regional Uniting Church, on Thursday, to discuss infrastructure in the greater Warnervale area.
Among the hot topics discussed were the long-awaited Warnervale Town Centre, as well as the “poor condition of key local roads” including Louisiana and Warnervale roads.
Member for Wyong, David Harris (Labor) encouraged locals to join with him in working with the new council to “turn over a new leaf” and make a start on the long-awaited projects.
“When I moved to Hamlyn Terrace 16 years ago we were promised that a town centre would soon be built in Warnervale,” Mr Harris said.
“I understand the frustrations of the community and I share them as a long-time local resident.
“The new council is an opportunity to turn a new leaf and get important projects off the ground instead of the expensive ‘pie in the sky’ projects of the old council, such as the airport and the Chinese theme park.”
In August, the state government opted to keep the Warnervale Airport Restrictions Act in place, curtailing the council’s plans to develop the airport for general aviation.
The decision frustrated the council which considered the airport to have potential to create hundreds of jobs.
“We know this because we recently tested the market with our expression of interest process to turn the airport into an general aviation hub and the response was positive,” former council administrator Ian Reynolds said.
In July, Central Coast Council terminated two contracts with Australia China Theme Park Pty Ltd (ACTP) for the sale of two lots of land in Warnervale, after the company failed to meet payment deadlines.
The council retained the two $300,000 deposits paid by ACTP under the two contracts.
“At no stage has Central Coast Council been a proponent of the proposed Chinese Theme Park nor has it been in any partnership or other commercial arrangement with ACTP in respect to that proposed park,” the council said at the time.
“Council's only roles in respect to the proposed Chinese theme park have been its now prior role as a vendor of the land, on commercially sound terms, and its ongoing role as a planning authority.”