Hans Lovejoy & Luis Feliu
The newly anointed NSW Labor candidate for Tweed, Ron Goodman, wasted no time in trying to wedge incumbent MP Geoff Provest (Nationals) over a paid parking proposal for Tweed Hospital.
Goodman is demanding that details be released and wants an explanation to why there has been no public consultation.
Mr Goodman said, ‘It is an arrogant money grabbing exercise by the Nationals and shows how out of touch they have become. Patients – many of them elderly – and their families have to drive and they will now have to pay for parking. They will have no choice.’
Until recently Goodman, 41, was the editor of www.mydailynews.com.au (APN) and before that worked at Quest newspapers (Newscorp) in Brisbane for ten years. When asked what he thought were Labor’s weaknesses, Goodman laughed said he ‘wouldn’t buy into that,’ but said that he wanted to contribute to the party to make it better and believed strongly in their core values. Goodman will contest Provest’s seat of Tweed in the upcoming 2015 NSW election.
Provest ignored by A Stoner
It comes as a Tweed residents’ group were recently snubbed by NSW Nationals leader Andrew Stoner despite a request by Provest for them to meet. Dubbed Save Lot 490, the group has amassed more than 10,000 signatures and is petitioning the government to save a 40-hectare block between Kingscliff and Salt from development. It’s one of the last remaining blocks of coastal land on the Tweed and has been the subject of a public campaign for years. Save Lot 490 group’s Jerry Cornford told The Echo that despite Provest trying to arrange a meeting with the group and Nationals leader Andrew Stoner when he was in Tweed recently, the minister’s staff said he was ‘too busy’.
The Echo reported at the time that no details of Mr Stoner’s visit were made available.
Last year the embattled Leightons Property group pulled the pin on a proposed resort project earmarked for the site, handing it back to the state government. But in a controversial move, the state government changed the block’s status from Crown land to ‘government property’, which the site’s defenders saw as preparing it for sale. Lot 490 was also the site of a rare species of orchid, Geodorum Densiflorum, destroyed by a fire police believe was deliberately lit in July last year, only two weeks after staff had collected seeds and sent them to the Millennium Seed Project at Royal Kew Gardens in the UK.