We're smack bang in the middle of a "water emergency" and the state government is to blame, according to Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party candidate Helen Dalton.
As the tap water runs brown and the lakes turn putrid in country towns across NSW, Mrs Dalton is pointing an accusatory finger at what she calls the government's "blatant water mismanagement".
She's met desperate people in country towns who have been unable to drink the contaminated tap water and have been relying on bottled water donated by Griffith locals.
"They feel like they need to help people, because the state government certainly isn't," Mrs Dalton said.
“Government water mismanagement created this disaster. Government should be the ones supplying the bottled water, not other country people struggling with drought."
She lashed out angrily at Member for Murray Austin Evans, claiming that he didn't have what it takes to stand up to the Coalition and make meaningful change to water policy.
"Austin’s just a yes-man for the Libs," Mrs Dalton said.
As the state election looms menacingly, Mrs Dalton is promising to do a better job standing up to the government if elected.
She insists that minor parties on the crossbench can do a better job of twisting the government's arm and getting policy change through the parliament.
One policy change Mrs Dalton is advocating for is a law to allow the government to declare a state of emergency over man-made disasters.
She claims the current water crisis is one such man-made disaster, and that emergency aid needs to go to some of the worst struck towns.
However, under the current NSW laws the Premier can only call a state of emergency due to fire, flood, storm, earthquake, explosion, accident, epidemic or warlike action which endangers people’s health.
Mrs Dalton is campaigning on a platform of "change", and she insists that a seat of Murray led by Mr Evans won't offer the kind of change she thinks is necessary.
But Mr Evans hit back at Mrs Dalton, saying that she was merely sniping from the sidelines without providing any credible alternative policy.
"She’s once again talking in vague complaints and not coming up with any solutions," Mr Evans said. “Dealing with this stuff takes hard work, and we’re working on the details and not just trying to get a headline.”
Voters can expect the back-and-forth political sledging to get even more intense as the date of the state election on March 23 looms closer.
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