Police Numbers

Echo 3 May 01

Police Numbers

I have raised my concerns in relation to the Richmond Local Area Command missing out on police hours due to officers on leave or restricted duties and not performing frontline police work. Of 172 positions in Lismore, Ballina, Casino and outlying areas, a total of 35 are either on long-term sick or stress leave, restricted duties, or their positions were vacant. The formula for working out police numbers in NSW had not been reviewed since 1985. It is obvious that this formula is outdated and does not take account of areas facing massive population growth, like the Northern Rivers. The job appeals system also allowed unfilled positions to remain vacant for months at a time. Don Page and myself will be raising our concerns in Parliament in an effort to get more police for the region.

Ben Carey - Cycle for Life

As your representative, I had the pleasure of officially welcoming Ben Carey, a remarkable young 23 year old, who is taking 12 months to cycle around Australia to raise awareness that "suicide is preventable". Ben will be cycling over 22,000 klm in 365 days, covering every state and territory visiting and talking with some 185 communities seeking real solutions and feedback to the tragedy of suicide. A small informal gathering of representative groups joined me in meeting with Ben and discussing various issues.

Coalition to Abolish Tax on Anglers

The Carr Government's new tax on anglers will be abolished by a Liberal/National Government. The Coalition is committed to abolishing the Carr Government's new tax on anglers and ensuring that the equivalent funding remains in place to enhance fish stocks, breeding and waterways health. There has been a considerable reaction against fishing licences (both salt water and inland) from people all over the State. These licences can add up to quite a sum for the typical occasional fishing outing. It is anti-tourism and is subject to very costly administration and policing. Anglers are already taxed on their gear, they pay licence and registration fees for boats and motor vehicles; this is yet another cost burden on their recreation. The Liberal and National Parties strongly believe that the fishing licence fee is a tax grab by NSW Treasurer, Mr Egan, that flick passes the financial burden of core responsibilities of NSW Fisheries to anglers.

Anzac Day 2001

Local commemorative services were well attended and I trust the community enjoyed participating in the Remembrance Day celebrations. One aspect of this year's Anzac Day that I believe is commendable and deserving of attention, was the attendance of many local school children especially during school holidays, particularly at the dawn services, which emphasises our young's reflection on the importance of this day. I am sure this respect will ensure the future of Anzac Day to the forthcoming generations.

Hospital Quality of Care and Value for Money

A General Purpose Standing Committee, chaired by The Hon Dr Brian Pezzutti is calling for submissions to its inquiry into the quality of care for public patients and value for money in major non-metropolitan hospitals. Public participation is being encouraged and the Committee is inviting written submissions from interested persons and organisations. The closing date is 18 May 2001. Terms of reference and further information is available upon request.

Centenary of Federation

Despite this being a significant part of our democratic history, I will not be attending the commemorative sitting of Parliament in Melbourne to celebrate Australia's Centenary of Federation.

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: lismore@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Authorised by Thomas George MP. Funded using Parliamentary entitlements.