National Parks Association to host Macarthur candidate forum

National Parks Association to host Macarthur candidate forum

"We want people to be informed when they cast their vote."

Macarthur residents will have a chance to question candidates running for the Campbelltown, Camden and Wollondilly state seats about their view on environmental issues facing the region at a forum next month.

The Macarthur branch of the National Parks Association is holding a 'Meet the Candidates' forum at Wests Leagues Leumeah on March 6, where candidates will be grilled on topics like overdevelopment, koala protection and water supply.

Branch member Julie Sheppard said there were so many environmental concerns ahead of the Macarthur region in the coming years and it was important voters understood where each candidate stood.

"The population and development in western Sydney is booming and there are plenty of concerns in our future," she said.

"I don't want people heading to the polling booths and entering a donkey vote.

"I want them to be informed and understand what the candidates are going to do."

Ms Sheppard said there were 14 candidates currently announced for the March 23 election.

The candidates are:

Camden - Peter Sidgreaves (Liberal), Sally Quinnell (Labor), Andrew Simpson (Independent) and Karen Stewart (Greens)

Campbelltown - Greg Warren (Labor - incumbent), Riley Munro (Liberal), Jayden Rivera (Greens) and James Gent (Christian Democrat Party)

Wollondilly - Nathaniel Smith (Liberal), Jo-Ann Davidson (Labor), Judith Hannan (Independent), Jason Bolwell (Shooters, Fishers and Farmers), Charlie Fenton (One Nation) and Heather Edwards (Animal Justice Party)

The forum will be controlled by a moderator and candidates will have three minutes to respond to pre-arranged and off-the-cuff questions.

Audience members will be asked to submit their questions ahead of time, to ensure the event runs smoothly.

In the first section of the night, the candidates will be asked to tell the audience their party's views on overdevelopment, water supply, and funding for the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

Next, Campbelltown candidates will be asked their position on the Georges River Regional Open Space (which comprises important koala habitat and spaces of significant Aboriginal and European heritage), the need to ensure the adequate provision of koala movements in light of planned development, and the construction of the Georges River Parkway.

Camden candidates must address the allocation of land for public open space as a high priority, environmentally-friendly development and platypus protection.

Wollondilly candidates will be questioned on their vision for the Wollondilly shire and all the development in its future, their thoughts on a proposed Bargo-Nepean National Park and their stance on mining in the shire.

The final section of the night will be open to audience questions.

Ms Sheppard encouraged everyone interested in the region's environmental future to attend the event and listen to the candidates' responses.

National Parks Association's Meet the Candidates event will be held at 7pm (arrival at 6pm) on Wednesday, March 6.

More information: call Julie on 0418 278 753.