The NSW O’Farrell government is due to bring down its first budget since the Coalition won office at the March state election.
Charles Sturt University (CSU) has experienced commentators to provide analysis of the budget and what it means for the communities of regional NSW.
These commentators can discuss such areas as:
Senior lecturer in Political Science with the School of Humanities and Social Sciences in Bathurst, Dr Dominic O'Sullivan, says, “A first budget is significant for any new government and given the goodwill with which this government was elected, it will be difficult to meet the high public expectations. This may create an opportunity for the opposition to re-assert itself”.
Agriculture and Primary Industries:
Agricultural innovator and Director of the EH Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation
in Wagga Wagga, Professor Deirdre Lemerle
, says, “The NSW government plays an important role in research, development and extension which underpins sustainable food production. Given the impact of climate change and the need to balance environmental protection with productivity, it is important that research is supported and the front-line activities of the Department of Primary Industries are not compromised in this budget”.
On the issue of funding for implementing the national curriculum, Head of School of Education in Wagga Wagga, Associate Professor Roslin Brennan Kemmis, says, "The development of the national curriculum has been a very long and involved process. It does entail significant changes for all Australian teachers and it is a fact that extensive professional development will be needed to ensure that the curriculum is translated into sound and effective teaching practice in NSW schools. The Commonwealth no doubt would argue that education is constitutionally the responsibility of the states and territories and therefore the costs should be paid in this way. However, with such a radical change to schools curriculum and the publicised benefits of a national curriculum instituted by the Commonwealth, it would seem fair that the costs of professional development at least be shared".