Shadow Minister Visits

Echo 2 May 02

With the NSW Cabinet visiting Evans Head this week, it was anticipated that many would take the opportunity to highlight concerns of the region, especially the implications of the proposed changes to the Richmond Regional Vegetation Management Plan.

Shadow Minister Visits

On Tuesday Shadow Minister for Roads and Tourism, Mr John Turner undertook an inspection of the Woodenbong-Legume Road, discussions with representatives of Lismore City Council regarding the Bruxner Highway and the pool redevelopment, and a visit to the Lismore Tourist Information Centre.

Today, The Hon George Souris, Leader of the National Party, Shadow Treasurer, Shadow Minister for Gaming and Shadow Minister for Rural Affairs and Services is in the Lismore electorate. During today's visit, Mr Souris will gather with various business people for lunch, have discussions with members of the Clubs Association and then met with representatives of the Australian Hoteliers Association. Mr George Souris has called on the NSW Government to immediately restore equity of access to services and opportunities in country areas. He says rural and regional areas of the state are disadvantaged in everything from health, education and transport to infrastructure and services. Mr Souris says a central platform of a Coalition government would be regionally focused decentralisation of government.

With the NSW election imminent next year it is extremely valuable for Shadow Ministers to become familiar and aware of the issues of the Lismore electorate.

Minister Iemma was in the electorate this week to present a cheque for $80,000 to the North Coast Academy of Sport, for the continued operation and success that this sporting facility has enjoyed fostering over many years. This funding is very much appreciated, particularly due to the prominent and talented sportspeople who have benefited and been fostered through the programs run by the Academy.

Pollies for Small Business Day

Yesterday I enjoyed the opportunity to undertake `work experience' at Woody's Sports Shoes, Sista's Caf‚ and Recycled Sports. Tomorrow I will be in Casino at Mitre 10 and in Kyogle at the IGA Supermarket. This opportunity will renew past experience, enable my interaction with local small businesses, but also meet many people who will not be expecting to be greeted or have their lunch served by their local member.

Richmond Regional Vegetation Management Plan

Last week, I attended the Casino and Bonalbo meetings regarding the above Plan, where over 300 landholders (with many not being officially invited), attended as the main stakeholders. The presence at these meetings reflected the anger and concern at the impact this plan will have on their lives. The Department of Land & Water Conservation stated that `the purpose of the regulations is to provide for reporting and compliance', I believe this could be done in a much more cost-effective manner that is stakeholder friendly. It was very evident that the three Committee representatives who are dependent (like the many farmers in attendance) upon the land for their major income have been consistently outvoted with any proposals to the Committee (so much for community consultation). I will now take forward their concerns direct to the Minister.

Public Liability

A Public Liability Insurance Information Service has been set up to help businesses and community organisations trying to obtain cover. An independent body, Insurance Enquiries and Complaints Limited, is available to assist people with their enquiries about public liability. The toll free telephone number for the Insurance Enquiries & Complaints Limited is:
1300 363 683. Alternatively, the web site is:

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.