Treasurer Gladys Berejiklian has today refused to answer questions on any advice she was offered by Treasury Officials about the ultimate costs of the LMBR Program. The project, which has already cost $570 million, is now $90 million over budget and far behind schedule.

In response to a question in the Parliament from Shadow Minister for Education, Linda Burney, the Treasurer refused to divulge whether Treasury officials had raised concerns with her about the management, administration and final cost of the program. 

The Treasurer’s refusal to answer questions comes after she confirmed during budget estimates hearings last week that Adrian Piccoli, Minister for Education, would have to make substantial cuts in his department to pay for its cost blow out - meaning less money for school maintenance, projects and upgrades. 

The Government has repeatedly refused requests to divulge any information about the total cost of the project which has been reported to be anywhere up to $1 billion. The LMBR program has cost $2.1 million for each of the 229 schools in the piolet program – just 10% of the public schools across the state.

Quotes attributable to NSW Shadow Minister for Education Linda Burney  

“The Government needs to be honest with NSW taxpayers – has the Treasury raised concerns about a project rolled out to just 10% of the state’s schools and already costing $570 million?” 

“The Treasurer should come clean about what her department has told her about the ballooning price of this project, it is clear that something has gone very wrong.”   

“The Treasurer has said that there will be no supplementary funding to cover the LMBR cost blow out, that means savings of up to $400 million will need to be found from inside the department  – that is less classrooms, less maintenance and  less desperately needed upgrades for students across the state.”   

“The Treasurer, Premier and Minister owe some respect to the people of the state, how much money are they willing to throw into this bottomless pit at the expense of parents, students and staff.”