Inquiry Into Group Homes

Express Examiner 28 September 99

Since my last column, Parliament has resumed and the debates at Macquarie Street have been very successful with the desired outcome of an inquiry into residential and support services for people with disabilities. Problems that remain to be resolved is the shortfall of funding by the Carr Government for health services and the unrealistic slashing of police budgets.

Inquiry Into Group Homes

I was pleased to advise local constituents of the Coalition's win for people for disabilities in delivering on its promise to fight for the establishment of an inquiry. The Legislative Council Standing Committee on Social Issues is conducting the investigation into the provision of residential care and others services. Submissions have been called for, with further information and a package available through my office.

Dairy Deregulation Compensation

The Coalition last week called on the Carr Government to provide adequate funding to assist NSW dairy farmers through the re-adjustment they will undergo as a result of full deregulation of the dairy industry. Assistance measures announcement by the Government are simply not enough. The Nationals are committed to working closely with the NSW dairy industry to overcome the challenges facing the industry and to ensure its future.

Casino Police Remembrance Day

Tomorrow I will be proud to join with the community as well as past and serving police officers at the Police Remembrance in Casino. This is a tribute to all who have lost their lives in protecting the community and national observance is respectful in honouring their service.

Tick Problems

I have been inundated with complaints from people who have received a letter from NSW Agriculture, Cattle Tick Program regarding the enforcing of policy. I am very concerned with the potential for disharmony between neighbours and the damage to the good working relations between property owners and tick staff. I have personally approached the Department and the Minister for Agriculture seeking their urgent assistance to resolve the conflict.

The New HSC

Many parents have been writing to me about the implementation of the new HSC. During Parliament, the Education Minister, John Aquilina admitted in Budget Estimates Committee that schools will have to pay for the new HSC text books out of their own budgets. With Mr Aquilina asserting that schools have finances to easily afford the books. I assured the Minister that local schools in this electorate do not have the funds. Change is always difficult and I believe most parents are not totally opposed the new HSC, just the way in which the changes are being rushed and implemented without sufficient planning and funding. I have conveyed these views to the Minister for his attention.

Northern Rivers Regional Catholic Schools Athletic Students

Whilst in Sydney, local students had the opportunity to visit me in Parliament House before heading off to compete in various events. I was proud to see the 60 or so students representing schools from Tweed Heads to Port Macquarie.

Guide To Development Planning Brochure

Available from my office is an updated version of this brochure, which has been amended to refer to the Protection of the Environment Operations Act.

Lismore Contact Details:

Office: 55 Carrington Street  LISMORE
Postal: PO Box 52  LISMORE  NSW  2480
Telephone: 02 6621 3624
Facsimile: 02 6622 1403
Email: lismore@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Murwillumbah Contact Details:

Telephone: 02 6672 7577