The 2016-17 NSW State Government budget was handed down on Tuesday leaving locals wondering… what about me?
In a budget that largely overlooks the Shoalhaven, Milton-Ulladulla residents appear to have been all but forgotten.
“Lovely isn’t it. It’s like between Nowra and Batemans Bay we don’t exist,” Kim Young, 57 of Mollymook said.
“I’ve given up on listening to them. They just think we are a holiday town. Do they even realise people actually live here?”
The vast majority of the 2016-17 state budget cash splash went to the regions’ major road upgrades.
$30 million was allocated to the existing Burrill Lake bridge replacement project.
In a move that saw almost $1 billion allocated for 1100 new classrooms across NSW, the region was again overlooked with locals fearing our schools soon won't meet the demand.
“We need another high school desperately,” local teacher Katie Greenacre said.
“Ulladulla High School is wonderful, but it’s bursting at the seams.
“With the closure of SAS secondary we need another public high school.
“The government is treating us like a ghost town and taking facilities away from us but we are growing. Look at all the new subdivisions and the demand on rental properties.”
The budget funding will see classrooms built at new schools and upgrades of existing rooms across Sydney's crowded inner ring and regional growth areas including the far north coast.
Opposition leader Luke Foley was sceptical about the schools investment, calling it "a mere drop in the ocean".
"We see a need for an additional 300,000 school places over the next 15 years,” he said.
His criticism was echoed by the Greens' education spokesman David Shoebridge who said "any increase in public school infrastructure funding is welcome, but this budget provides less than a third of what is needed,"
"Even if the Baird government continues to spend at this rate it will see public schools with a $7.2 billion shortfall, and thousands of public school kids without a school or classroom."
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