Phil Costa

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The Honourable
Phil Costa
Minister for Water
Minister for Corrective Services
In office
8 December 2009 – 28 March 2011
Preceded by Nathan Rees (Water)
John Robertson (Corrective Services)
Constituency Wollondilly
Personal details
Born (1949-07-24) 24 July 1949 (age 69)
Guildford, New South Wales
Political party Labor Party
Profession School principal

Phillip John Costa (born 24 July 1949) is an Australian politician. He was an Labor Party member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly from 2007 until 2011, representing the electorate of Wollondilly. He served as Minister for Water and Minister for Corrective Services.[1]

Early life[edit]

Costa was born on 24 July 1949 at Guildford, New South Wales.[1] Prior to his election he was a primary school teacher and principal of public schools in the Oaks and Buxton.[2] He was named the Citizen of the Year in Wollondilly Shire in 1984.[2]


Costa was first elected to Wollondilly Shire Council in 1985; he continued serving on the Council until 2008. He served as Deputy Mayor from 1999 to 2005 before being elected as Mayor from 2006 to 2007, immediately prior to the 2007 state election.[3]

Costa initially planned to stand as an independent candidate in the 2007 state election but was persuaded by Premier Morris Iemma to stand instead for the Labor Party.[4] He was elected to the Legislative Assembly on 24 March 2007 with 53% of the vote.[5] From June 2007 to September 2008, he was a member of the State Parliament's Standing Committee on Parliamentary Privilege and Ethics and Chair of the Standing Committee on Broadband in Rural and Regional Communities.[1]

From 8 September 2008 to 4 December 2009, he was appointed Minister for Water, Minister for Rural Affairs and Minister for Regional Development in the Cabinet of incoming Premier Nathan Rees.[1][6]


After being voted in as Mayor in 2007, Costa was announced as the Labor candidate for seat of Wollondilly. Deputy Mayor of the time Judith Hannan and councillors Michael Banasik, Denise Appel, Helen Kuiper, Simon Landow and Shane Read passed a vote of no confidence in Costa that limited Costa’s powers as Mayor. Costa refused to step down and went on to win election in the 2007 state election.[7]

During 2009, Costa came under heavy criticism from Wollondilly Councillor Benn Banasik, Mayor of Camden Council Chris Patterson and Councillor Jai Rowell for the Labor Government's approval of the AGL Power Station at Appin.[8] Wollondilly Council passed a resolution from Councillor Benn Banasik requesting Costa to resign but this was later withdrawn. Costa hit back at the Council, complaining in the Macarthur Chronicle that he had received 12 letters from Wollondilly Council.[9] Despite being the Minister for Regional Development at the time, in 2008 Costa disavowed knowledge or responsibility for a Labor government project that would have seen a new commuter car park in his electorate built next to existing family homes as a replacement for a car park facing the Macarthur train station. It was proposed that the former car park be converted into a tavern by commercial developers.[10][11]

Personal life[edit]

Costa is married with two adult children.[6] He is not related to Parliamentary colleague and former Treasurer Michael Costa.[12]


  1. ^ a b c d "The Hon. Phillip John COSTA, DipEd MP". Parliament of New South Wales. 22 March 2010. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Cr Costa Wollondilly's New Mayor" (PDF). Bush Telegraph. Picton: Wollondilly Shire Council. October 2005. ISSN 1037-2849. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  3. ^ Fenech, Michelle; McGill, Jeff (5 August 2008). "T-shirts spell unity to a T". Wollondilly Advertiser. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  4. ^ Clennell, Andrew (4 October 2006). "Another Costa joins state Labor". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  5. ^ "State Electoral District of WOLLONDILLY". New South Wales Electoral Commission. 3 January 2008. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  6. ^ a b "Rees ministry: who's who". The Sydney Morning Herald. 8 September 2008. Retrieved 8 April 2009. 
  7. ^ "Wollondilly Shire Council Mayor and Labor Preselection". Parliament of New South Wales. 24 October 2006. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  8. ^ "Councils attack power plant approval". 702 ABC Sydney. 12 August 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  9. ^ "Phil Costa receives plenty of mail from Wollondilly Council". Macarthur Chronicle Wollondilly. News Limited. 24 March 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  10. ^ Campbell, David (29 July 2008). "Locked out". Macarthur Chronicle Campbelltown. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  11. ^ Ward, Matthew (13 October 2009). "Macarthur station car park plan angers nearby residents". Macarthur Chronicle Campbelltown. Retrieved 3 November 2010. 
  12. ^ Mahar, Jessica (8 September 2008). "Costa to be a Minister". Campbelltown Macarthur Advertiser. Fairfax Media. Retrieved 8 April 2009. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of New South Wales
New district Member for Wollondilly
Succeeded by
Jai Rowell