Thursday, 12 July 2012

Now Official: NSW O'Farrell Government has sent Grafton into permanent decline

Like many country areas around New South Wales, Grafton City and environs has seen past glories turn into a falling population, less young people of working age living in town, higher unemployment rates than both state and national averages, a slowly shrinking viable central business district and rolling job losses as large companies withdraw to bigger regional or metropolitan centres.

Despite these woes, it had remained the transport  hub for the Clarence Valley, the centre for most locally delivered state and federal government services and, one of two main administrative centres for the local government area.

That changed less than two hours ago when the O'Farrell-Stoner-Gulaptis juggernaut finally sent in prison vans (protected by members of the police riot squad) to remove inmates from Grafton Gaol - turning it into a 60 bed remand centre for individuals awaiting court appearances.

Grafton has now lost 107 permanent jobs which will depress the local economy further and have a flow-on effect across the Valley.

The very craven Nationals Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis reportedly turned up outside the gaol after those vans had entered the prison.


Anonymous said...

"Gulaptis vows to stay on picket line" ran the headline and in the article he said he would be "at the picket line when the trucks arrived".
Like all his other promises, this one wasn't honoured.
Gulaptis waited over an hour after the trucks had arrived before showing his face.

Up river Bill said...

I notice that the final meeting (which saw protestors decide not to challenge full movement of inmates from Grafton Gaol) included input from Chris Gulaptis MP.
Bet he was on the side of no direct confrontatation - after all that suited his Government and the National Party best.