Western Sydney Leadership Dialogue Chairman, Christopher Brown AM, today thanked outgoing Premier and Minister for Western Sydney, Mike Baird for his contribution to the growth and success of the region.
Mr Baird, who will officially resign from politics next week, helped launch the Dialogue in 2015, and was a regular contributor at its events, having addressed the inaugural ‘Out There’ Summit at Western Sydney University, Parramatta and other functions.
“Despite where you stood on his policies, the one thing that you cannot dispute, is that Mike Baird was not afraid to make the tough decisions,” Mr Brown said.
“During his tenure, Western Sydney has benefited from a commitment to regional infrastructure investment, particularly across the transport, health and sport portfolios, and in doing so, has helped focus much-needed political and commercial attention on places such as Parramatta.
“The Dialogue has shared a close association with Mr Baird during his two-year term, and we certainly wish him, and his family, the best as they enter into their next chapter.”
Mr Brown added it was vital that the NSW Government, and the next Premier, builds on the Western Sydney platform that has been created, with stronger focus on its other key cities.
“It is also essential that the Western Sydney portfolio remains the personal responsibility of the State Premier.” Mr Brown said.
“There are a number of unanswered questions in economic and social policy in Western Sydney that will need to be addressed by Mike Baird’s successor, including housing affordability, transport links, and social infrastructure.”
The Dialogue will be presenting a list of priority projects to the new Premier, and to Opposition Leader Foley, in coming months focusing on such issues as a north-south train line via Badgerys Creek Airport, CBD Metro links to Parramatta and Liverpool, the fate of the previously-announced Olympic Corridor light rail and Powerhouse relocation, Olympic Park master planning, major funding for Liverpool Hospital and an urban amenity fund for the civic improvement and investment attraction for regional growth cities like Campbelltown, Penrith and Blacktown.