Opposition Leaders Visit

Express 25 August 04

Opposition Leaders Visit

On Monday this week, I hosted a visit to the Lismore Electorate by Leader of the NSW Liberals, Mr John Brogden and Leader of The Nationals, Andrew Stoner as part of their country bus tour. The Coalition Leaders visited the Lismore the Coalition Leaders, were shown the appalling conditions of the Lismore Police station. Once again I am calling on the NSW Labor Government to immediately fund a new police station. In the State Budget, Labor identified Lismore as one of 27 police stations on its "high priority list" but no funding was allocated for any of the stations on the list.

Rail Announcement Treats North Coast People As Fools

The political stunt by Labor relating to the Casino to Murwillumbah rail line announcement is treating the people of the North Coast like fools. Labor in NSW has a long history of making promises and breaking them. Last December, Bob Carr and Transport Minister, Michael Costa, promised a 12 month moratorium on the loss of any CountryLink rail services, including the Murwillumbah and Casino XPT. Months later they axed the service. Shadow Transport Minister Mr Mike Gallacher is calling the announcement `a massive con', posing the question "why would a Federal Government pay $15 million to fund a State Government rail line". Federal and NSW Labor have no intention of ever fulfilling this promise. Just a short time ago, Minister for Transport Services, Michael Costa, told the people of the North Coast the cost of their rail service was not sustainable. Only the NSW Liberal/National Coalition has pledged to re-open the Casino to Murwillumbah line - regardless of who wins the Federal election.

Seniors Week 2005

"The Best Time for Ages!" is the theme for 2005 Seniors Week program with the aim of the program to assist the development and/or organization of local Seniors Week Projects and activities which is held between 13 and 30 March next year. Copies of application forms and accompanying funding application handbooks are available from my office.

Electorate Functions

Anglican Service - On Sunday, I was present at the Anglican service celebrating the centenary of the laying of the foundation stone of the Nave of St Andrew's Anglican Church in Lismore. This special occasion was well attended by parishioners and local community members.

Farewell to Father Hackett - I was pleased to attend and join with the Casino community to show appreciation of Fr Hacketts' contribution, not only to the Catholic Church, but also to the ecumenical community in Casino.

Country Week

The opening of Country Week was held last week in Sydney over three days at Olympic Park. It is a promotion designed to highlight the many opportunities available to Sydney businesses and residents by relocating to rural and regional NSW. Numerous North Coast Councils were represented at the Expo, all selling the message that rural and regional NSW is a fantastic place to invest, live and work. Sadly the Northern Rivers area was not represented. This campaign has the potential to help stem the population drift from the country to the city. The County Week concept was part of The Nationals' regional development policy at the last election. As part of this launch, the Nationals hosted a BBQ in Sydney showcasing country produce, including products from the Lismore Electorate, to mark the beginning of Country Week. My contribution from the Lismore Electorate was Premium Beef from Casino. Other produce on offer included Macadamia nuts and coffee from the Ballina and Byron Bay areas and Clarence River Fishing Co-operative Prawns from Clarence.

Kyogle and Casino to Lismore Bus Service

Kirklands buslines in conjunction with Northern Rivers Community Transport have added another benefit to the standard Friday bus run from Kyogle to Lismore via Casino. Elderly residents of Kyogle or people with a disability, will be able to be picked up from their home if needed and dropped off at selected destinations in Lismore eg Hospitals, doctor's surgery etc.

"Indent" One Off Grants

This is an organisation called Independent entertainment network for young people in NSW. You can apply for up to $2,000 per gig, festival or event happening after September 10 this year. Further information can be obtained by visiting www.indent.net.au

2005 Macquarie Bank Indigenous Scholarship

Applications for this scholarship are now open and is merit-based and open to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who can demonstrate a developed interest in directing, producing, screenwriting or documentary. Application forms can be downloaded www.aftrs.edu.au

Small Grants for Small Rural Communities

A small grants program for small rural Australian communities is offering grants again this year to benefit not-for-profit organisations in rural and remote communities. For more information www.frrr.org.au or call 1800 170 020.

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: lismore@parliament.nsw.gov.au

Authorised by Thomas George MP. Funded using Parliamentary entitlements.