The NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal has today announced that it accepts NSW Health’s assertion that it is unable to find the study on which it based the choice of Frenchs Forest as the location for the new Northern Beaches Hospital.
Perhaps NSW Health’s inability to find the final document may have something to do with the fact that a Draft version of the same report (Development Options Business Case) reveals that from the three locations under final consideration for the hospital the Frenchs Forest site:
- ranked a poor third on qualitative/operational criteria,
- came equal second on 'risk analysis’
- was cheapest in the short term, on the basis that roading/access upgrades would cost $21.3 million, whereas they are currently estimated at $400 million plus $125 million for public transport upgrades.
So much for for the 2013 NSW Planning White Paper's prescription that "Planning authorities are to make decisions in an open and transparent way and provide the community with reasons for their decisions.” NSW Health either can’t or won’t justify a decision which channels upwards of two billion dollars of tax-payer money into private sector pockets, and devastates a pleasant residential suburb in the process.
There aren't too many ways available for venting one's anger or frustration at some of the things happening in the world around us. One such escape valve is the good old Letter to the Editor, even if only a small proportion of them gets published. It is often well-nigh impossible to keep the discussion short enough for the newspapers. So rather that have them expire in some Editor's Trash bin, we'll preserve them for posterity here. Inevitably, though, some nuances will be lost for those unfamiliar with the background or the letter or article to which we are responding. But each is undoubtedly a miniature literary masterpiece, though you may find the themes become somewhat repetitive.