Senior Andrews Government bureaucrats have today confirmed the obvious, the Business Precincts portfolio is yet another complete waste of taxpayers’ money by the Andrews Government.
Speaking today at Public Accounts and Estimates Committee hearings, Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions officials struggled to name anything the Precincts portfolio had achieved, does or could do, without the lead from other areas of government.
Departmental officials confirmed the Minister, his staff and around 25 departmental staff comprise the entire Business Precincts portfolio.
Under this portfolio’s watch are just three projects; central Footscray, Fishermans Bend and Parkville. Yet planning for these sites is conducted by either the associated local council and or the Department of Planning; private investment could be facilitated by multiple departments; transport for these areas is coordinated by the myriad of Transport bureaucracies and social services for each precinct are also outsourced to other departments.
Senior Government bureaucrats confirmed that the Business Precincts portfolio is simply responsible for the ‘curation’ of land at these locations with associated lesser responsibilities at an unnamed number of others.
Comments attributable to Shadow Finance Minister Matthew Guy:
“If the Minister for Business Precincts is wholly responsible for nothing, has achieved nothing and has no sole control over a single project why the hell are we paying his wage?
“Going tens and tens of billions of dollars in to debt, Victoria can hardly afford to waste money; employing a Minister, associated staff as well as departmental resources for a portfolio about nothing is an outrage.
“While many local sporting clubs are struggling to get funding for change room upgrades, the Andrews Government spends millions for a Minister and his staff to do, plan or achieve nothing.
“Victorians are being ripped off to pay millions of dollars for a Minister and staff to ‘curate’ land in just three areas. This money would be better spent for community projects struggling post COVID and the associated ‘land curation’ responsibilities should go to departments seemingly already doing similar things.”