Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Piccoli’s population inquiry

NSW Minister Adrian Piccoli believes the NSW Government’s updated population prediction for Deniliquin is wrong.

TYLA HARRINGTON June 10, 2014 3:15am

NSW Minister Adrian Piccoli says he will investigate the NSW Government’s updated population prediction, which continues to indicate Deniliquin will lose 1600 people by 2031.

The Nationals candidate for the NSW seat of Murray Mr Piccoli, who is currently Member for Murrumbidgee, told the Pastoral Times he does not believe the figures are accurate.

Without making any promises, Mr Piccoli says he aims to look at the formula the Department of Planning and Environment use to determine the predictions.

In the meantime he is ‘‘urging people to ignore the prediction’’.

‘‘It’s just not true,’’ he said of Deniliquin’s proposed decline.

‘‘The department never seem to get it right.

‘‘Every time figures come out they are wrong.

‘‘You only have to look at Deniliquin and realise that it is growing.

‘‘With proposals on the table like the reopening of the Deniliquin Abattoir and the proposed ethanol plant, a population decline should not be predicted.

‘‘The demand for housing population is also increasing and to me that means population is increasing.

‘‘It seems they have looked back at the last five years and the drought and tried to project that forward.’’

Mr Piccoli said he has already made a request to view the formula used to determine future populations.

He said while he is sceptical the formula would be altered, he will continue to fight on behalf of councils.

‘‘I am getting information on how those figures are derived,’’ he said.

‘‘Councils have every right to be angry as it impacts on businesses and investment confidence, especially as we are recovering from drought.

‘‘I’m pretty annoyed about it myself and I want to find out what methodology they use.

‘‘This information is useful to councils and other originations regarding planning, however it has to be accurate.’’

The Department of Planning and Environment indicates internal migration loss, high fertility rate and an aging population will influence the population in Deniliquin in the next 17 years.

The figures were ‘updated’ late last month after Bureau of Statistics figures showed Deniliquin’s population had increased by 19 people from 2011 to 2012 and 40 people from 2012 to 2013.

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