It was my pleasure to meet with Australian Business Limited (ABL) Members when 70 business people from across NSW rallied on the front steps of Parliament on Wednesday 26 June 2002, to launch NSW Business Priorities 2003 - Policies for Jobs, Growth and Competitiveness.

Ms Beverley Edwards, Managing Director of Lido Distributing, Mr Richard O'Leary, Managing Director, O'Leary Partners and our very own Northern Rivers representative; Mr Christopher Dean, Chairman of Thursday Plantations, met with myself and other National Party Members to present a document containing 57 recommendations across 10 priority areas to promote innovation, boost productivity and increase investment.

ABL Members presented this document before both sides of Parliament, to highlight what the Australian Business Limited sees as being the solutions to issues that its member companies say are impeding their growth and ability to add jobs. The top three priorities are access to a skilled workforce, the burden, the red tape of compliance with a whole raft of bureaucratic requirements on business, and the rising cost and access to insurance premiums.

As part of the Coalition team who met with these representatives, the concerns expressed reflected those also prevalent in the Lismore electorate that encompasses the townships of Casino, Kyogle and West of the Range. Payroll discrepancies has been my major line of approach and attack on the Carr Government, particularly when many of the businesses in my electorate deal with Queensland companies and are competing against businesses who enjoy lower payroll taxes in the bordering state. Workers compensation and training incentives will be considered when developing appropriate policies to alleviate these obstacles that are impeding business growth, investment and job creation. These issues will be used by the Coalition team in policy development for the 2003 election.

Contact Details:

Office: 55 Carrington Street  LISMORE
Postal: PO Box 52  LISMORE  NSW  2480
Telephone: 1800 336 166 or 02 6621 3624
Facsimile: 02 6622 1403  Email:

Authorised by Thomas George MP. Funded using Parliamentary entitlements.