NSW Treasurer Matt Kean has cast doubt over the state government’s promise to raise the Warragamba Dam wall after saying the controversial project was not included in the state’s four-year building plan.
However, just hours later, Premier Dominic Perrottet appeared to contradict Kean when he said construction on the multibillion-dollar project would begin in the next term of government.
“As I’ve said very clearly, we have a strong infrastructure pipeline, we’ve committed to raising the Warragamba Dam wall,” he said.
“I expect construction of [the] Warragamba Dam raising to commence in the next term of government.”
In a debate with opposition treasury spokesman Daniel Mookhey on Ben Fordham’s 2GB Breakfast program, Kean said there was no funding for Warragamba, or the Northern Beaches Link in the state budget because they didn’t feature in the government’s four-year infrastructure accounts.
“Over the next four years, they’re not in our infrastructure plan,” he said. “You can talk about that for the next election.”
Perrottet denied that he and the treasurer were at odds over the project, which requires federal government approval.
Asked whether the dam was part of the four-year infrastructure plan, Perrottet said, “We’ve got a long-term infrastructure plan.”
Mookhey said the government had a “black hole” in its budget, and could not pay for mega projects without selling more government assets.