Lock the Gate Alliance has welcomed the Deputy Premier’s announcement yesterday that the NSW Government will establish a statutory Hunter Expert Panel of unions, community groups, local government and local business to oversee spending on diversification of the region’s economy.
A body of this kind is a key goal of the Hunter Renewal roadmap, launched two years ago by the local community following a summit in Singleton.
Lock the Gate NSW Coordinator Georgina Woods said, “We’re delighted that the Deputy Premier has made this crucial commitment to a statutory body of local leaders to guide the Hunter region’s plans for diversification and renewal.
“We know from experience here in the Hunter and around the world that this is the kind of framework mining communities need to adjust to market change - putting local people in charge of public investment in diversification before disruption occurs.
“The Hunter Expert Panel will bring unions, community groups, business and government together, united in our commitment to the Hunter region, its landscapes, people and future.
“That is a crucial step for our region, and if it is done well, it should set us up for the future with diverse industries and businesses opportunities, and good local jobs,
“This is one of the key tools the Hunter needs to ensure we’re ready for the change that is coming as the world decarbonises, and we look forward to seeing it implemented.”