Express 29 October 2003
Last week I called on the NSW Minister for Regional Development, David Campbell,
to save the jobs of 17 administration workers from the Wollongbar Agricultural
Institute. I welcomed Mr Campbell's criticism on the Federal issue of Telstra
slashing jobs in the northern NSW, but said the Minister had been strangely
silent on the subject of regional job losses from his own State Government
departments. Furthermore, I ask the Minster to show his support for the
positions under threat at the Department of Education and Training in Lismore
due to the restructuring changes. Corporate Services Personnel, Office Managers,
Clerical, Properties and Information Technology staff are all waiting on
tenterhooks to know if their jobs will still exist. These people need the
backing of the Minister to ensure their livelihoods are protected.
Our Kids Calendar 2004 Launch - Partaking in this launch was a special
opportunity and the proceeds from the sale of this wonderful calendar assists
the Our Kids program. Copies of the calendar are available for purchase from my
NSW Country Racing Council 2002/03 Awards for Excellence - I was pleased to
attend this presentation night and be present when Anzac Cummings received the
prestigious Simon Nivison Special Achievement Award in recognition of
outstanding results which have led to the betterment of country racing.
Workers Compensation `Last Court' Sitting - the ceremonial last sittings of the
Compensation Court of NSW on the Northern Rivers was presided by Judge Neilson
with barristers, solicitors and others associated with this Court in attendance.
Urbenville/Woodenbong Senior Day Care 21st Anniversary - It was my honour to be
the special guest at these special 21st Birthday celebrations. Representatives
came from Casino, Kyogle, Bonalbo, Woodenbong, Urbenville and Killarney.
10th Annual University Service - This event was to celebrate the 10th Annual
Interdenominational University Service and was conducted by Chaplin John Kidson,
with music by Luke Vassella and the Unichurch Band, and special guest was Stuart
Maze, a former U/21 Rugby International.
NSW Sport & Recreation Grants
Applications have opened for NSW Sport & Recreation Country Athletes Scheme,
Country Coaches & Officials Scheme and the Regional Sports Facility Program. The
closing date for the Country Athletes and Country Coaches & Officials schemes is
31 December, whilst the Regional Sports Facility Program closes on 12 December.
Guidelines and application forms are available from my office or the department
website - www.dsr.nsw.gov.au.
Countrylink Rail Services
The Coalition has launched a petition to save the Countrylink Rail services. The
petition highlights concerns that existing passenger services may be abolished
and replaced with buses in rural and regional NSW. It calls on the Government to
ensure these services are maintained and improved. Copies of the petition are
available from my office.
National Carer's Week
Held from 19-25 October, National Carer's Week celebrates and acknowledges the
unpaid work of families, friends and relatives who care at home for their loved
ones. There are in excess of 6,000 primary carers in the Far North Coast area
and many will probably received little or no assistance, often due to lack of
information and feeling they can manage without help. This year in Carer's Week
it is hoped to reach some of these hidden carers to let them know what is
available to them. Any carer's wanting further information should contact 1800
Churchill Memorial Trust
Applications have opened for the 2004 Churchill Fellowship program. Each year
the Trust awards about 100 Fellowships, on average about $20,000 each. These
awards are available to Australians 18 years and over for study travel overseas.
No prescribed qualifications are required, however merit is the primary test, as
is the desire to share the results of the Fellowship with the community. The
closing date for applications is 29 February 2004. Australians striving for
excellence, with an opportunity to investigate a project overseas, are
encouraged to apply. Further information and application forms are available on
the website www.churchilltrust.com.au or from my office.
WorkCover Discussion Paper
WorkCover have released their findings of their review into the NSW Workers
Compensation Scheme. To view the discussion paper go to www.workcover.nsw.gov.au,
find the `What's New' section and click on the Review of the NSW Workers
Compensation Scheme link.
Mobility Parking Scheme
From September 2003 the RTA will issue new style cards to all approved
applicants. Changes have been made to the scheme to protect the interests of
legitimate users. The most significant change is the introduction of a licence-style
card that includes a photograph. The card includes security features similar to
a driver's licence. It will play a key role in tackling the fraud that was
associated with the previous system of paper permits.
International Day Of People With A DisAbility
The aim of International Day is to promote, educate and raise awareness within
the community about people with a disability. I fully support for this
celebration in recognising those who strive to achieve regardless of their
disability. This is a day to unite the community by linking people with
disabilities, community organisations, businesses, State and Federal Government
and the wider community.