Capital Assistance Grants announced
Echo 10 January 02
The year had not ended when many local volunteers were called upon to assist
in fighting fires near Bungawalbyn. Typically, these people did not hesitate to
leave their families and loved ones, forego Christmas festivities and answer the
call to help those in need. The community's overwhelming gratitude has been well
publicised and I trust the volunteers, their families and the team of supporters
will continue to receive the well-deserved appreciation for their efforts.
I have received a number of enquiries regarding the late gazettal of Monday 28
January 2002 as a public holiday in NSW. Please do not hesitate to contact my
office for confirmation of this and other gazettals, furthermore details can
also be attained at www.dir.nsw.gov.au.
Capital Assistance Grants announced
Nine Lismore electorate sporting organisations benefited from the allocation of
$43,167 under the 2001/02 Capital Assistance Program. Local successful projects
Legume Tennis Club Inc for the drainage, excavation, elevation and
levelling of playing surface, erection of a safety fence and planting of
trees at the Legume Public Recreational Ground
Casino Town Tennis Club Inc
for the replacement of fencing
Casino Croquet Club Inc for the installation
of water pipes to clubhouse and playing courts
for the erection of a storage
shed for equipment at Balzer Park
The Channon Tennis Club for the
resurfacing of two courts, fence boundary and construction of children's
Casino Rifle Range for the provision of silhouette targets and
underground power cabling
for the installation of lighting for night use at
Kyogle High School field
for the provision of a full size soccer field and
grass at netball court at Dunoon Public School
Eltham Tennis Club for the
resurfacing of one court with synthetic grass
The aim of the program is to work in partnership with the general sporting
community and to support those groups who have shown they are prepared to help
Privatisation of Energy Providers
From 1 January 2002 households and small businesses are now able to choose where
they buy their energy. This initiative aims to allow all electricity and gas
customers to compare prices and services when shopping around for a better deal.
A booklet on the new competitive energy market will be sent out to all
households in the next few weeks. General information is available from 1800 671
650. EWON (Energy and Water Ombudsman of NSW) warns that customers should be
aware that if they change, you are only changing your retailer (the company
which sells you energy and bills you for it). You will not be changing your
network provider (the company which delivers energy to you through the existing
poles and wires).
RTA Fees Rise
The Carr Government has decided to charge a $30 fee for the issue of number
plates and a $30 fee for driver knowledge and hazard perception tests. The RTA
road rules handbook will also no longer be free, attracting a new fee of $25;
all from January 1. There will also be rises in inspection charges for heavy
vehicles, trailers, buses, taxis and hire cars in March 2002. The total increase
in charges statewide will result in between $335 million and $400 million extra
revenue for the Government.
I was pleased to see the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource
Economics (ABARE) is predicting better farm gate prices for dairy production
next year. In its December quarter forecast released, ABARE says strong export
demand and the competitive Australian dollar would help push up domestic dairy
prices. Domestic prices for milk are expected to rise 7 per cent to 30.2
cents/litre. Cow numbers are expected to rise 4.7 per cent to 2.3 million and
manufacturing milk is expected to rise eight per cent to 9.3 billion litres.
Total milk production is expected to rise 6.5 per cent to 11.2 billion litres.
Total value of dairy exports is expected to rise 20 per cent to $3.6 billion.
The industry, following a slump through deregulation, is bouncing back.
Churchill Fellowships 2003
The Churchill Trust is calling for Australians over 18 to apply to undertake an
overseas study project that will enhance their usefulness to the Australian
Community. No prescribed qualifications are required, merit being the primary
test based on past achievements or demonstrated ability for future achievement.
Closing date is 29 February 2002 and further information can be obtained by
contacting my office.
Best wishes for a very successful and prosperous 2002.