The NSW Legislative Council has a poor reputation. Many MPs have been there too long, including some crossbenchers who find it easier to cut deals with the government instead of fighting for new and important policy agendas.
This has allowed the Labor/Liberal/Nationals/Greens NSW policy consensus to float along unchallenged. One Nation aims to disrupt this consensus, given the way in which it has failed the State in key policy areas such as school education, energy policy, anti-discrimination laws, Sydney’s urban planning, water policy and neglect of the bush.
All One Nation policies are designed to give voters a real choice, a better option, advocating commonsense solutions to longstanding problems. Part of our approach is to improve the Legislative Council, making it a better-informed, deliberative and activist chamber.
The upper house needs to establish processes whereby important matters are not rammed through. Legislative Councillors need to go out of their way to ensure suburban, regional and country NSW voices are heard. The dominance of inner-city elites in policy making must end.
One Nation will work with other parties to insist that a proper Green/White Paper process must precede any Ministerial Bill of a highly contentious nature introduced in State Parliament. This should have happened, for instance, before the government rushed in to its disastrous greyhound-racing ban in 2016.
The Green Paper should inform the public of:
The relevant facts and figures about the social, economic, environmental or other problems that the legislation is meant to address; and
The alternative solutions to fixing the problem and the pros and cons as well as the quantified costs and benefits for each of these policy options.
The White Paper should inform policy makers and affected parties of the:
Public responses to the Green Paper, including the views of impartially-chaired focus groups representative of the wider public (suburban, regional and country NSW) and exposed to contending arguments; an
The reasons for the Government’s decision to favour a particular policy in preference to other options in its proposed legislation.