Blue Mountains City Council has reaffirmed its opposition to an airport at Badgery’s Creek just as the Western Sydney Region of Councils (WSROC) — of which it is a member — embarks on a major consultation campaign to determine views about a second Sydney airport.
WSROC has long-held — and continues to hold — a strong position against construction of an airport in Sydney’s west, but recent public comments made by WSROC’s new president Tony Hadchiti indicated the organisation may have changed its stance, angering Blue Mountains councillors.
Mr Hadchiti told Sydney media “our councils recognise the immense economic value and potential infrastructure growth that a second airport at Badgerys Creek will bring to the region” and “although in the past there has been significant community opposition to the site, we suspect that attitudes have shifted significantly during the past 20 years”.
At its February 19 meeting, Blue Mountains councillors unanimously backed a matter of urgency motion penned by Deputy Mayor Mark Greenhill and council’s WSROC representative, Clr Mick Fell, that will see council write to Clr Hadchiti, slamming his recent public comments about Badgery’s Creek as irresponsible and out of line.
The letter will express concern the WSROC president “did not seek a formal mandate from his board nor did he consult mayors before countenancing a change to policy on a major issue like Badgery’s Creek as a possible site for a second airport”.
It will also call on Clr Hadchiti to consider the views of member councils more closely “before straying from policies that have been formally adopted”.
The WSROC board met on February 22 and decided to begin a community consultation process before the organisation determines whether to change its stance against a second airport in western Sydney.
Mr Hadchiti told The Hills News on February 22 western Sydney residents needed to have an important voice in the process.
‘’It may be that people will think that the potential economic and employment benefits outweigh the potential negatives of air and noise pollution,’’ Clr Hadchiti said.