Former Dubbo deputy mayor has plan to 'fix' Wellington

Former Dubbo deputy mayor Ben Shields has issued a three-point plan on how to make Wellington thrive.

Member for Dubbo and Minister for Police Troy Grant. Photo: File.

Member for Dubbo and Minister for Police Troy Grant. Photo: File.

Mr Shields’ points, released in a statement, were: 24-hour policing and Wellington-based detectives to help combat social and crime issues; housing and property growth to cater for the ‘hundreds of new high paid government jobs being sent to Wellington within the coming months’; and economic stimulation. 

Mr Shields criticised the NSW government for a lack of action locally.

Former Dubbo deputy mayor Ben Shields.

Former Dubbo deputy mayor Ben Shields.

‘We need to fix Wellington.’

“Given that Wellington has the most unfortunate title of the ICE capital of NSW, surely the government would see fit to have two detectives based permanently at the town in order to properly investigate and track down the higher up dealers?”

Former Wellington councillor David Grant said he doesn’t completely disagree with the points Mr Shields made, but said there was more to consider.

“Honestly I am not really sure that a 24-hour police station in Wellington is the answer.”

Mr Grant said he believes detectives are what the town needs.

“We need them to make sure we can start solving problems, not just dealing with it,” he said.

“… a lot of the issues that we’re speaking about are state government issues - it is time Mr Troy Grant listened to our community and advocated for appropriate resources to be given to Wellington.”

In terms of economic stimulation, Mr Grant agreed more needed to be done.

“I think we need a dedicated person based in Wellington to help facilitate this economic development Ben was talking about.”

Dubbo MP and Police Minister Troy Grant said that allocation of staff and the hours of operation of police stations across the state is a matter for the police force.

“Police are allocated authorised strength and then additional positions as the need arises,” Mr Grant said.

“The NSW Government has added over 900 additional police to the force since December 2011, of which 217 were allocated to rural and regional locations.”

Mr Grant said the appointment of the newly-created position of Deputy Commissioner for Regional NSW following the appointment of a new Police Commissioner in the coming weeks will give regional areas a far greater say in the equity and allocation of police resources.