Electorate Interviews

Express Examiner 27 April 2005

Electorate Interviews

I will be conducting interviews throughout the electorate over the next couple of weeks. A West of the Range Tour on Wednesday 11 May, Kyogle interviews Tuesday 17 May and Casino interviews on Thursday 19 May. Should you wish to make an appointment, please contact my office.

Flashing Lights At School Zones

A Liberal/Nationals' Coalition Government will install flashing lights at NSW schools indicating the operation of 40km/h school zones. We believe it is necessary to increase motorists' awareness of the operation of school zones. NSW is already lagging behind South Australia, Queensland and Victoria who have been effective in reducing speed up to 12km/hour and child pedestrian injuries. The Carr Labor Government announced a trial of flashing lights in February 2003 and is still yet to report its findings. Many drivers ignore or are unaware they are entering a school zone. Flashing lights indicate to drivers days and times that the zones are enforceable. The Coalition will ensure high risks schools will receive flashing lights first and re-enforces the commitment by the Opposition's policy of saving children's lives.

Rotary Centennial Conference

I was honoured to attend and officially open the Rotary International District 9640, Centennial Conference at the Lismore Workers Club recently. Congratulations to Brian Wheatley and his committee on the wonderful program for the weekend which included speakers such as Father Chris Riley, Maj Gen Peter Arnison, Sir Clem Renouf and Dame Carol Kidu.

Workplace Fatalities Bill

In a significant win for the National/Liberal Coalition and people power, the Carr Labor Government has withdrawn its flawed Workplace Fatalities Bill. I held a forum to inform local business people of the impacts of the Bill, which would have been disastrous for employers. Recently Minister Della Bosca's wrote a letter indicating I was scaring local businesspeople. Obviously my concerns were legitimate with the Minister now withdrawing the Bill.

Country Shows

Country shows are under threat from State Government charges and red tape and recently in Parliament The Nationals moved a motion to debate the future of country shows. During the debate I declared that we would not stand by and watch Labor destroy one of regional Australia's greatest institutions - the country show. The major issue currently facing country and regional shows is the extra cost to have police attend and the introduction of the National Livestock Identification Scheme (NLIS). I also called on the Carr Labor Government to waive the excessive charges for police attendance and grant a three-year moratorium to enable show societies to phase in the NLIS. I highlighted show society concerns regarding OH&S requirements, public liability insurance and maintenance of buildings on showground property. Mr Carr must immediately act now to withdraw the police charges, support the introduction of NLIS and provide further support for maintenance of buildings.

Minister's Rail Visit

I took the opportunity of meeting the Minister for Transport Services, John Watkins, at the Casino Railway Station in the early hours, during his trip from Sydney to Murwillumbah on the rail/bus system. I was able to explain to him the full operation of the afternoon XPT service and its use of the interchange. I also re-enforced the desire for a commuter train service to run between Casino & Murwillumbah should the XPT not be reinstated. I indicated that if we were successful with a commuter train its viability would depend on having the contract to transport passengers from Casino to Murwillumbah, as a tourist operation would not be enough.

Legislative Council Standing Committee on Social Issues

This Committee is undertaking an inquiry into Dental Services, that closes Friday 27 May 2005. Terms of reference and other information relating to this inquiry is available at www.parliament.nsw.gov.au.

Electorate Functions

Anzac Day - I was honoured to attend Anzac Day commemorations starting with the Dawn Service at Kyogle, the march and a luncheon at Casino and a Battle of Britain Tribute at Lismore.
Harmony Day - I had the recent pleasure of opening Harmony Day and the Wake-Up Time Art Exhibition at North Casino. Harmony Day provides an opportunity for us to celebrate our successes as a culturally diverse society, re-commit ourselves to harmony and say "no" to racism. This allowed the North Casino community to come together to enjoy themselves and celebrate their community.
SCU Graduations - 400 students graduated from Arts, Business, and Health and Applied Sciences. Congratulations to all the graduates, and especially to nine students who were awarded University Medals.

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