Minister for Skills John Barilaro has today admitted the Baird Government is open to “asset recycling” of regional TAFEs across NSW.

After being questioned in budget estimate hearings about the risk of regional TAFE closures in Dapto, Moss Vale and Belmont, Mr Barilaro stated that the Baird Government was “open to a process of asset recycling and rationalisation” – allowing the government to sell these sites. 

The TAFE sites in these regions have and continue to provide classes to youth seeking to further their skill set and seek gainful employment. 

When questioned about Cooma TAFE in his own electorate of Monaro, Mr Barilaro stated that more than $5 million dollars had been spent on refurbishing and redeveloping the site. 

Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for Skills David Harris 

“The Baird Government is failing to commit to protecting the crucial resources needed by regional communities. Instead they’re busy focusing on how they can use these sites for something else.” 

“Less education choices mean fewer opportunities for people in regional NSW to gain the skills needed to excel.” 

“With the average youth unemployment rate in regional areas of Belmont, Dapto and Moss Vale sitting around 15 per cent, it’s clear that these communities can’t afford to lose this vital infrastructure.”