Lucy Wicks takes a stand - It's time to make the Central Coast a stand-alone region
Federal Member for Robertson Lucy Wicks is renewing calls to make the Central Coast a stand-alone region with Gosford as its capital city.
"The Central Coast is not part of the Greater Sydney, Newcastle or Hunter regions," Ms Wicks said.
Ms Wicks, who has been lobbying the NSW Government for change for over 12 months, said the extended COVID-19 lockdown has highlighted the need for the Central Coast region to be excluded from the Greater Sydney catchment definition.
Ms Wicks is on the right track. However, the issue is highly complex and involves Commonwealth as well as State governments at a bureaucratic level.
Politicians have no control over the bureaucracy which sees itself as the long term guardian of the country.
At issue is the historical disfunction of the Gosford / Wyong, now Central Coast, council areas for over fifty years or more where a them-and-us culture was cultivated by both councils.
At no point in that time has there been a unified Central Coast voice with a capacity to inform and influence government.
Ms Wicks calls for a common definition for the Central Coast from the NSW Premier however this must be the responsibility of the Central Coast community (See Edgar Adams' Editorial Page 6) to decided who and what we are. At that point it must be promoted from within the community.
In many respects it is about branding.
It is the community that has to influence government. Former Chairman of the Central Coast Area Consultative Committee (now Regional Development Australia Central Coast RDACC) and CEO of the Sydney Olympic Games Committee, one of Australia's most accomplished bureaucrats,
Sandy Hollway, once said of the Central Coast, "we (the government) can't make change, the community has to do it and that takes leadership."