MP livid after cemetery decision not deferred

Not happy: Macquarie Fields MP Anoulack Chathivong. Picture: Anna Warr

Not happy: Macquarie Fields MP Anoulack Chathivong. Picture: Anna Warr

Macquarie Fields MP Anoulack Chanthivong has been left livid with Planning Minister Rob Stokes after he refused to delay a decision on the proposed cemetery at Scenic Hills.

The Joint Regional Planning Panel are set to make a decision on the controversial 136,000-plot proposal on Thursday.

Both Mr Chathivong and Campbelltown Council had sought a deferral due to the impending council elections and the fact the JRPP will soon be replaced by the another planning body, the Greater Sydney Commission.

“Requests by both myself and Campbelltown City Council to defer the meeting until after the local government elections on 10 September have fallen on deaf ears and I find this bitterly disappointing,” he said.

“Sadly, it’s typical of the arrogance of this Government.

“The application by the Catholic Metropolitan Cemeteries Trust is one of the most controversial ever submitted.

For the minister to allow the JRPP to continue with its public hearing with two councilors from the old council – one of whom is not re-contesting election – simply defies belief.”

The council is currently in caretaker mode meaning it will not have an elected representative at Thursday’s public meeting.

No go: Planning Minister Rob Stokes has ignored requests to delay a decision on a proposed cemetery in the Scenic Hills. Picture: Geoff Jones.

No go: Planning Minister Rob Stokes has ignored requests to delay a decision on a proposed cemetery in the Scenic Hills. Picture: Geoff Jones.

“Any decision regarding the future of the Scenic Hills, which our community has fought long and hard to protect, must be made with full representation and accountability,” he said.

“I call on Minister Stokes to defer the JRPP hearing until a new council has been elected.

“As a vital green open space corridor between Campbelltown and Liverpool, the Scenic Hills must be protected because once it’s gone, it will be gone forever.

“Like so many others in our community, I won’t give up the fight to save our Scenic Hills.”

Anyone wishing to speak at the meeting must register before the meeting.

Details: jrppenquiry@jrpp.nsw.gov.au

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