15 March 2024

Helen Dalton tells Premier to 'stop giving the people of rural NSW the sh*ts'

| Chris Roe
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MP Helen Dalton has suggested that the Premier should supply the bush with 'Gastro-Stop' because he's giving them the sh-ts.

MP Helen Dalton has suggested that the Premier should supply the bush with Gastro-Stop because he’s giving them the shits. Photo: NSW Parliament/Chris Roe.

Member for Murray Helen Dalton delivered a surprise notice of motion in the NSW Parliament, calling for the Premier to personally supply diarrhoea and headache medication to people in the bush.

The independent MP has been highly critical of both the federal and state governments’ approach to water management and today took aim directly at NSW Labor Minister Chris Minns.

“I move that this house – one – recognises the devastating impact the government’s idiotic water policies are having on rural NSW,” she declared in the Legislative Assembly on Thursday morning.

“Two – calls on Premier Minns to provide an unlimited supply of Nurofen and Gastro-Stop to the people of rural NSW at his own personal expense.

“And three, calls on the Premier to stop giving the people of rural NSW headaches and the sh-ts!”

Helen Dalton has taken aim at NSW Water Minister Rose Jackson and Premier Chris Minns for their support of Commonwealth water buybacks. Photo: NSW Parliament.

Ms Dalton has made water management a core issue and has been outspoken in her opposition to the Commonwealth’s proposed buybacks of 450 gigalitres of water from NSW.

“I’m venting my frustration at the Premier and Water Minister Rose Jackson who should be representing NSW,” she said.

“I don’t understand why they are supporting buying back water to be handed over to the Commonwealth and then sent down to the lower lakes in South Australia,” she explained.

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When Ms Dalton challenged the Premier in parliament last month, Mr Minns referred her to the NSW Alternatives to Buybacks Plan that he said offered a compromise.

“I want to make it clear that the NSW Government doesn’t support buybacks as a solution to the environmental challenges facing the Murray Darling system,” Mr Minns said.

“Our plan is to go to the Commonwealth Government and identify infrastructure projects for them to fund to return environmental water to the system.”

But Ms Dalton dismissed the alternative plan as “having a bet each way” and said that NSW was at risk of compromising its “food sovereignty and devaluing irrigation communities”.

“It shouldn’t be done because water is wealth and you will see the end of the intergenerational agriculture industries,” she declared.

“He agrees that buybacks are not the solution, but he’s holding his hand for all this money from the Commonwealth and it is chicken feed compared to the water he’s losing.

“Because he doesn’t understand agriculture he’ll be losing billions and billions of dollars in food production. He’s trashing rural communities.”

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Ms Dalton has urged the government to consider investing in other initiatives to improve the environment along the river system.

“We could be looking at carp control. We could be looking at fish ladders. We could be looking at water quality,” she said.

“The NSW Government is not backing rural irrigation communities at all and, while it’s not really a joking matter, I’m saying that you are giving us the sh-ts!”

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