Illawarra Newsroom

Local council jobs at risk under roads reclassification plan

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The opposition is worried about the job security of Council road workers in Wollongong, Shellharbour and Kiama as the NSW government prepares to transfer 15,000 kilometres of rural and regional roads to the state.

Shadow Minister for Local Government Greg Warren wants local jobs secured because the transfer will affect a number of Illawarra roads.

It comes after the Government issued a Request for Information regarding roads maintenance contractors, throwing into question the job security of thousands of Local Government employees.

The Government is seeking to understand the suppliers available, the geographical area they can service and their capability.

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Warren said the Government should be prioritising the thousands of Council workers who maintain the roads, instead of outsourcing to contractors.

"It would affect local jobs down through the Illawarra.

"What you could see is people that are currently employed in their local Councils to go out and fix roads, that could be sub-contracted out to businesses in Sydney, that's not a good outcome.

"We want to see local jobs for local people.

"The best way we can do that is just keep the status quo so that local people are fixing local roads.

"How can the Government put the future of thousands of Local Government jobs at risk in the middle of a pandemic? Warren said.

"The Government’s election commitment to transfer 15,000 kilometres of road to the State was meant to help ease financial burdens on Councils.

"Instead it will mean less funding and job losses across regional NSW, it's disgraceful," he said.

Images: Travis Winks and WCC