The NSW Greens have claimed a funding disparity between Shellharbour and Kiama is part of a broader plan to use a government fund for the "pork-barrelling" of Coalition-held seats.
But Kiama MP and government minister Gareth Ward said he was the reason Shellharbour was included in the fund in the first place.
The Stronger Country Communities Fund is the focus of the Greens and Labor, with the suggestion some local government areas were favoured as they were in Coalition seats.
"Greens analysis of the $300 million in grants in rounds one and two of the Stronger Country Communities Funding shows a huge skew towards Coalition seats where the average funding was $153 per resident, as compared to $53 per resident in non-Coalition seats," a statement from the Greens read.
The Greens' David Shoebridge pointed out an apparent disparity in funding for rounds one and two between Kiama and Shellharbour LGAs.
According to government data, Kiama received $2.5 million while Shellharbour got $2.1 million.
When the third round is taken into account, the funding was $3.3 million for Kiama and around $3.2 million for Shellharbour - a difference of just $100,000.
However, 58 per cent of the Shellharbour LGA funding went to projects in the Liberal-held Kiama electorate.
"It's hard to explain to residents why their projects keep missing out on funding when ones a few kilometres down the coast in a Coalition seat are getting support," Wollongong City Greens councillor Mithra Cox said.
Mr Ward rejected this suggestion, pointing out that he helped to have Shellharbour made eligible for the fund in the first place.
"It was the Labor Mayor of Shellharbour who came to me and said 'we need to fight to get Shellharbour back into the fund'," Mr Ward said.
"I agreed with her and we went and campaigned together to do it."
As for the Shellharbour LGA projects that fall within his electorate, Mr Ward made no apologies.
"My job as a local member is to take advantage of funding that is available," he said.
"I'm elected as a local member of Parliament and my job is to look after my community.
"I haven't just been doing it since this fund ... I've never needed a particular bucket of money to stand up and fight hard and deliver and get things done for my electorate."
No fan of the Greens, Mr Ward was not impressed by their suggestion that something dubious had happened.
"This is just typical of the Greens - the Greens political party are the most sanctimonious group of individuals I've ever had the displeasure of working with," he said.
We depend on subscription revenue to support our journalism. If you are able, please subscribe here. If you are already a subscriber, thank you for your support.