Anzac Celebrations

Express Examiner 25 April 01

Anzac Celebrations

It is pleasing to hear the discussions and preparations for today's celebrations. It is a day of remembrance for servicemen and women who gave and risked their lives to protect our country. I trust local communities will attend and participate in the march and dawn services paying respect to these wonderful people.

Dairy Report

An Interim Report of the Impact of Dairy Deregulation and Assessment Committee was tabled in Parliament recently and copies are available upon request.

Cattle Tick Meeting

Following indications by the Minister for Agriculture that forecasted changes to the cattle tick control program will proceed. A meeting is being convened by the Casino Tick Committee (elected at the last meeting) on Tuesday 1 May at the Casino RSM, commencing 7.00pm.

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.

NorthPower Community Support Schemes

Following my representations on behalf of numerous non-profit organisations, NorthPower has announced its commitment to sponsor local halls relieving some of their financial burdens. The Scheme targets community halls that are used by the general public and non-profit organisations like the Scouts and Girl Guides. Sponsorship also applies to premises of voluntary emergency services such as the Rural Fire Service and the State Emergency Service. The assistance is in the form of $200 towards electricity bills. Inquiries can be made direct to NorthPower on 132 066 or application forms are available from my office.

Country Shows - Country Halls

In Parliament last week I had the opportunity of highlighting the financial struggle of Show Societies, in meeting rising running costs. To the individual rural communities the annual show means so much more than an annual cash injection. Shows provide a focal point for many of the far-flung communities in rural and regional NSW. It is their window of local achievement - from livestock to sewing, preserving of jam, cake making and lots more. I am concerned about the decline in shows, being experienced both locally and regionally. Many country people are just too busy trying to make ends meet to dedicate the hours necessary to running shows. A large contingent of voluntary workers enable shows to function and assist in the survival of community halls. I have asked Minister Amery to acknowledge the difficulties being faced and to increase funding meet increasing costs of maintaining showgrounds and community halls.

Changes to Workers Compensation Legislation

A number of people have conveyed to me their concerns about the Workers Compensation Legislation Amendment Bill 2001. The Opposition has been equally concerned about the Carr Government's absence of a reform program to stem the escalating unfunded liability which, has blown out by $500 million in the last 6 months to a total of $2.18 billion. Recently the Carr Labor Government hurriedly introduced the Bill with virtually no prior consultation with employers, employees, unions, legal or medical professions. Since then dissension within Government ranks, together with threats of industrial disputation by the union movement, has now seen the Government forced to delay the passage of this legislation. This means that debate has been postponed until Parliament resumes in late May. The Coalition wishes to see what amendments the Government may be considering and will comment on these when details are available.

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