(5 August, Parliament House Sydney)
Ms CLOVER MOORE: My question is directed to the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure. Will the Minister confirm that the City of Sydney or the Central Sydney Planning Committee will be the development application consent authority for any expansion of the Elizabeth Bay Marina? Will the Minister inform the House what plans and proposals have been shown to Planning NSW in the past 18 months?
Mr BRAD HAZZARD: The Government appreciates that the member for Sydney in her capacity as Lord Mayor of Sydney would be interested to clarify the ongoing role of the city in determining the future of the Elizabeth Bay Marina. As the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure in the O'Farrell Government, I have been conveying the message to local government across the State, as have all the Coalition members in this place, that the State Liberal-Nationals Government wants to work closely and more openly in a true partnership with local government. That comes into stark focus in Sydney. Sydney is the gateway to New South Wales, indeed to Australia. When Sydney is doing well it has a positive effect on regional New South Wales and on the other States.
It is critical in that partnership that there is a sense of trust. That is certainly not the legacy left by the former Labor Government. Whether it is the biggest development in town, Barangaroo, or some of the more modest developments, that partnership with the City of Sydney, that transparency and openness, is important to the State Government. In relation to the Elizabeth Bay Marina, a couple of intervening factors destroyed any reliance on the existence of openness or transparency under the former Labor Government. Media reports of 21 May 2011 confirmed that the first intervening factor was the involvement of that Labor dealmaker, that person of great trust. Who was it?
Mr John Sidoti: Eddie Obeid.
Mr BRAD HAZZARD: Eddie Obeid.
Mr Daryl Maguire: Fast Eddie.
Mr BRAD HAZZARD: It was not only Fast Eddie. Another person was also involved, who in the past few weeks has regularly been doing the grand walk down to the Independent Commission Against Corruption. Who is that former member? It is Tony Kelly. In summary, some very interesting players were involved in this process. They seemed to have an agenda. As the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, I have had the opportunity to look through the documents. I have looked into the darkness of what has gone before under a Labor Government and I have seen how it works. The Elizabeth Bay Marina was co-owned by Mr Fitzhenry and Michael Dalah, who now probably considers himself unlucky to have been a long-time neighbour of Eddie Obeid's son Moses. The development they wanted to proceed with represented a massive increase in the size of Elizabeth Bay Marinaâ€”effectively four times its current size.
Looking back, I am sure that Mr Fitzhenry would not see it as fortuitous but Tony Kelly, the man who cannot get dates right on letters, also cannot remember meetings that he had. Mr Fitzhenry cites the fact that he well remembers taking a phone call from Eddie Obeid and Eddie Obeid just happened to hand the phone immediately to Tony Kelly. Tony Kelly said to Mr Fitzhenry basically, "What do you want, mate?" He effectively wanted to know how many berths they needed and how much they needed to grow the marina. It then became a question of dealing with the formalities. A letter dated 22 February 2010 requested that the development be referred as a part 3A development. In other words, slip it past the City of Sydney. That letter was signed by Tony Kelly. One can only imagine what they were doing behind the scenes to try to make sure it became a part 3A development.
On 1 July they were told that could not be done. All was quiet until three weeks before the election. Suddenly another letter was written, this time asking for the development to go to the joint regional planning panel. They did anything they could to keep it away from democracy and the City of Sydney. That was Labor's style. I say to the member for Sydney that the Coalition Government takes the view that the law is that the development application go to the City of Sydney. I ask the City of Sydney to deal with the application in an open and transparent way, as it does with all developments. The new State Government will work with the City of Sydney to make sure that the outcomes are achieved in an open, transparent and democratic way. We can forget about the dark days of Labor. We are now in the light of a Coalition Government.
Mr BRAD HAZZARD: Further to the answer I just gave to a question from the member for Sydney, I am sure that my colleagues on the other side of the House will be delighted to have this correspondence out in the openâ€”
Mr Richard Amery: I knew you would get to the point sometime.
Mr BRAD HAZZARD: You haven't got to any point in the last 25 years. I seek leave to table a letter from the Hon. Tony Kelly, MLC, Minister for Planning, to Mr David Furlong, Director, Plan Urban Services Pty Ltd, regarding the proposed redevelopment of the Elizabeth Bay Marina, undated, and a letter from the Hon. Tony Kelly, MLC, Minister for Planning, to Dr John Roseth, Chair, Sydney East Regional Panel, regarding the proposed redevelopment of the Elizabeth Bay Marina, dated 2 March.