Labor Leader Luke Foley outlines 5 Point Plan for heritage protection

In Parliament | 18.04.17

A Labor Government will deliver New South Wales’ first ever State Heritage Strategy, beef up the state’s Heritage Act and restore a strengthened Office of Heritage to the centre of Government, Labor leader Luke Foley announced today. 

In a speech delivered at Parliament House to mark World Heritage Day and the 40th anniversary of the NSW Heritage Act, Mr Foley outlined a 5 Point Plan for the protection of the state’s significant heritage. 

Under the current Coalition Government, driven by a development at all costs mindset, heritage issues have been pushed into the background, neglected, often belittled and denigrated. 

Under the 5 Point Plan outlined today, a Foley Labor Government will: 

  1. Develop and deliver the first-ever NSW State Heritage Strategy. 
  2. Remove the ability of the State Government itself to use the economic hardship provision of the Heritage Act to refuse a building heritage protection. 
  3. Stop a Heritage Minister ignoring out of hand a recommendation from the Heritage Council to protect a particular place, by introducing a public hearing to allow the advocates for preservation another opportunity to make their case. 
  4. Restore the Office of Heritage within the Department of Premier and Cabinet so that heritage issues are at the centre of government decision-making. 
  5. Re-locate the Office of the Premier and the Cabinet room to one of Sydney’s pre-eminent public buildings, the Chief Secretary’s building on the corner of Bridge and Macquarie streets. 

Quotes attributable to NSW Opposition Leader Luke Foley 

“I believe in progress. I also believe that the preservation of our significant heritage and the development of our state are not incompatible. 

“A government led by me will once again treasure and conserve important heritage buildings, items and places. 

“As a statement of our commitment to the preservation of our heritage, the Premier’s office and the Cabinet room will be housed in one of Sydney’s pre-eminent buildings, the Chief Secretary’s building. 

“The centre of the administration of the government of the state should be that great public building of the Victorian age, the building Sir Henry Parkes ran the administration of the colony from, not some rented office space in a B grade building somewhere else in the city.” 

Quotes attributable to NSW Shadow Minister for the Environment and Heritage Penny Sharpe 

“The Coalition Government displays a reckless hostility to the preservation of our precious environmental and cultural heritage. 

“The historic sandstone Department of Education and Department of Lands buildings in Bridge Street have been flogged off and will be turned into a luxury hotel. 100 year old heritage trees on Anzac Parade, planted during World War One as a tribute to the original Anzacs, are being chopped down.”