NO OPEN MIC FOR MAYORS

Premier Mike Baird will not have time for one-on-one meetings with mayors when he visits Albury. Picture: FAIRFAX

Premier Mike Baird will not have time for one-on-one meetings with mayors when he visits Albury. Picture: FAIRFAX

NSW Premier Mike Baird’s flying visit to Albury next week won’t include time for one-on-one discussions with local mayors.

Member for Albury Greg Aplin confirmed last night mayors and general managers within his electorate could instead catch up with Mr Baird at other functions arranged as part of his 

Border visit.

They include a private function on the night he is in Albury and a business breakfast the next day organised by the Albury Northside Chamber of Commerce.

Albury mayor Kevin Mack said last night he didn’t consider the absence of a private session with the Prem­ier, pictured, 

a snub.

“It’s unfortunate, but he has got a tight timeline,” Cr Mack said.

“We will do as best we can with any opportunity that presents itself.”

Corowa mayor Fred Longmire said he was disappointed there wasn’t time set aside for local council leaders to meet the Premier.

“It is terrific he is coming down, but what is he coming down for?” he said.

“It is very disappointing that a request for the opportunity for mayors and general managers to meet Mr Baird on pressing issues in our part of the world isn’t available.

“I’ve met him once before at a function in Wagga and he is a very engaging person.

“But it would have been good to be able to have time set aside to raise relevant issues.”

Mr Aplin said he regretted there was not enough time for Mr Baird to meet mayors.

“There is no time for private meetings unfortunately,” Mr Aplin said.

“It is not possible I am afraid.”

Mr Baird had made a previous commitment to visit Albury in his role as treasurer and recently honoured the pledge despite taking over as Premier.

It will be the first visit to Albury by a NSW Premier since Mr Baird’s predecessor, Barry O’Farrell, brought his cabinet to the city for a community forum in June 2012.

But the event was cut short when winter fog played havoc with flights.

Mr Baird will travel down on the afternoon for yet-to-be-confirmed official engagements.

Mr Aplin said the opening of the ambulance station was still a possibility.

“It is something I have put forward and am hoping it will be confirmed,” he said.

“It is an obvious one because it needs to be done.”

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