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September 10, 2018

Member for Wollongong, Paul Scully has today called on the Deputy Premier, John Barilaro MP, to rule out any further funding from the Port Kembla Community Investment Fund (PKCIF) for NSW Government Departments and agencies.


It is expected that the third round for the PKCIF will be open for applications shortly – despite the next round being long overdue.


Mr Scully wrote to the Deputy Premier on Friday with his request following information from the Parliamentary Secretary for Planning, the Central Coast and the Hunter indicated that $44,000 in funding to the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) from the second round of the PKCIF would fund a “literature review”.


When the EPA applied for funding the project description indicated that it was for:


Preparation of a report on the presence of lead and other heavy metals in the air, soil and roof dust from legacy industrial activities in Port Kembla.  The report to include measures to manage human health risks from these contaminants.


Mr Scully told the Deputy Premier that it was expected that the $44,000 project would deliver a useful report from the EPA, which would address these issues, not just a “literature review” which will not be completed until next year.


The PKCIF should only be dedicated to funding merit-based projects from eligible community groups.


NSW Government Departments and agencies should be ruled out from applying for funds under the PKCIF.


Mr Scully’s letter to the Deputy Premier is attached.


Comments attributable to Paul Scully MP:


“I was always very sceptical about the funding provided to the EPA under the PKCIF in round two and it wasn’t on the list of projects that I thought should have been funded.


“I’m less than impressed that the project description does not appear to match what was expected from the funding provided to the EPA.


“I’ve asked the Deputy Premier to rule out any funding for NSW Government Departments and agencies from eligibility under the third round of the PKCIF.


“The PKCIF should be dedicated to community projects, not a churn of money from one department or agency to another.


“Department or agency projects should be funded directly from within portfolio programs, not penny pinching from funding programs for community projects.”