5 December 2008
The Kyogle Newspaper
5 December 2008Labor’s Health Cuts – Our Jobs
I was appalled at the recent announcement that Labor will cut 400 full time jobs from our hospitals on the North Coast. Just when we thought they could not starve our hospitals any more Labor is now prepared to take our local health workers jobs. This clearly demonstrates that Rees and his team have no understanding of our needs in regional Australia and are prepared to allow our health and safety to be put at risk because this is what it means if we lose our nurses and health workers from our hospitals. Labor wants to axe jobs at Kyogle Hospital along with Lismore, Nimbin, Ballina, Byron and Mullumbimby. On Saturday 29 November I organised a rally with my State Parliamentary colleague Don Page to protest against these ludicrous job cuts. Rallies had also been organised by other Nationals Members on the North Coast as we stand united in our disgust of this decision and fight together to protect these important jobs in our local communities. I will not allow the safety of the people in my electorate to be put at risk because of Labor’s misguided funding priorities and inability to manage the NSW economy.Mini Budget
The Rees Labor Government’s Mini Budget is one that will hit local families hard, hurting country and coastal people in northern NSW communities. Drastic cuts confirmed in the Mini Budget were;
- introduction of an annual co-payment of $45 for primary school students and $90 for high students (capped at $180 per family with hardship provisions),
- abolition of the petrol subsidy scheme operating in Northern NSW,
- and discontinuation of the $50 per student Back to School allowance.
This Mini Budget was a heartless move by the Rees Labor Government and will cause a lot of hardship for people who live in my electorate, especially those who live just south of the Queensland border. Other changes outlined in the Mini Budget include;
- Green Slip reform to provide hospital and ambulance coverage for at-fault drivers. This extra coverage will add around $10 to the cost of the average green slip,
- extension of environmental levies for non-recycled waste and increase coal royalities.
The Mini Budget was the Rees Labor Government’s attempt to pull NSW out of the deplorable financial position that our State is in, it is in defence of the State’s AAA credit rating which has slipped to an all time low in recent months.Congratulations Russell Grove
Kyogle was very much in my thoughts recently when I attended a surprise afternoon tea for former Kyogle resident Russell Grove to acknowledge his 37 years of Service to the NSW Parliament. Russell, who was born and bred at Kyogle, began with the Legislative Assembly in 1971 and was appointed to the position he currently holds today, Clerk of the NSW Legislative Assembly, in 1990. Russell is now the longest serving Clerk of the NSW Legislative Assembly. I am sure the Kyogle community joins me in congratulating Russell on this wonderful milestone.Washing Machine Rebate Now Available
I welcomed the introduction of the new Washing Machine Rebate, now available, providing a $150 cash back on any 4.5 star rated washing machine purchased for a residential property in NSW. A 4.5 star water efficient washing machine can save up to 100 litres per wash, when compared with an old top-loader. Considering that a family washing more than six loads a week could save up to 31,000 litres of water a year, this is a major investment in water efficiency. The rebate became available on August 1, 2008 (limit of 1 per family) and to qualify, NSW residents must:
- purchase a new washing machine with at least a 4.5 star water efficiency rating from 01 August 2008 to 30 June 2010 inclusive;
- purchase the machine for personal use; and
- install the machine in a residential property in NSW.”
To claim the rebate, people need to complete a rebate application form, attach the original receipt for the washing machine showing payment in full. Completed application form and receipt should then be sent to NSW Climate Change Fund, Washing Machine Rebate Program, PO Box A290, SYDNEY SOUTH NSW 1232.Christmas Wishes
As the festive season is fast approaching I take this opportunity to extend best wishes to you all from myself and Deb, my staff, Bronwyn, Karen, Kim, Chris and Kirsten for a safe, happy and holy Christmas. I trust Christmas will be a time of reflection for you all and give you time to relax with family and friends before taking on the challenges of the new year ahead. God Bless.