While TAFE officials discussed the future of the Mountains outdoor recreation course with industry on Monday a war of words erupted between local politicians about representations made to the State Government over the issue.
Last week Labor MLC for the Blue Mountains Helen Westwood questioned Education Minister Adrian Piccoli about whether he knew about the course, after State MP for the Mountains Roza Sage told the Blue Mountains Gazette she had made representations on the issue.
“No, I have not been briefed about that, so I do not know,” Mr Piccoli said when asked during a budget estimates meeting about the matter.
Ms Westwood said it was clear Mrs Sage had “been caught out misleading the people of the Blue Mountains . . . Ms Sage must now come clean about what she has actually done to help students and businesses in the community.”
But when contacted on Monday by the Gazette about the allegations, Mr Piccoli’s representatives explained it was all a bit of a misunderstanding.
“He was on leave until Tuesday and was asked about this on Wednesday,” the spokesman said.
Mrs Sage also told the Gazette she had been making semi-daily calls to the minister’s office since September 26 and had also “spoken directly to the (TAFE) Institute director “seeking advice and stating concerns raised by teachers, students and industry”.
“The Labor Party is again grasping at straws and has shown gutter politics is the only game they know and are determined to continue,” she said.
“With any matter of urgency raised by residents in the Blue Mountains my first reaction is to contact the minister’s office and state these concerns directly.”