Best wishes for 2006

Express Examiner 25 January 2006

Best wishes for 2006

I hope everyone enjoyed the festive season, gathering with family and friends. I trust the ensuing year will be prosperous and with many electorate issues pending, I will be working together with my State and Federal colleagues to achieve the needs of the Lismore Electorate.

Local Students

Congratulations to the many students who completed the HSC last year, what a great accomplishment. Some of you would be now preparing for further studies, job opportunities and embarking on new adventures. I would like to wish you all well in your future endeavours and trust that you all follow your chosen journey into careers and adult life with zest and determination. For those pursuing employment, the following websites may be useful www.jobs.nsw.gov.au selecting `NSW Government jobs'.

No New Year Love from Labor

When the clock struck midnight on Sunday it signalled a raft of tax increases:
A land tax increase. A $450,000 valuation will attract $2140 in land tax in 2006, up 18.89% from $1800 payable in 2005.
An increase in Bus fares of up to 7% starting January 3rd
An increase in Ferry fares starting January 3rd
TAFE fees to rise by an average 3.14%
Snow skiers and boarders will pay $22 to access Kosciuszko National Park, up 37.50% from $16 in 2005
National Park annual pass to cost $190 in October 2006, up 31.03% from $145 in 2005
RTA registration fees to rise. A Commodore will cost $362 to register in 2006, up 2.26% from $354 in 2005
A billion dollar turnaround in the budget, with a half billion dollar deficit in 06/07
More money towards a wasteful and unwanted $1.3 billion desalination plant

Taxpayers are again being slugged for Labor's economic vandalism and incompetence. In his limited time as premier, Morris Iemma has levied at least $700 million of new taxes to try and plug the budget black hole and that trend is set to continue into the new year. Despite ten years of record revenues, services are being slashed and infrastructure crumbling.

State Representative Awards

The State Government has instituted an award to recognise people who reach state representative level in any field. Candidates of any age who have succeeded in a competitive field such as dance, music, sport, the arts or academically, and are now representing the state of NSW nationally or internationally, may apply for the award. See the website www.premiers.nsw.gov.au/our_library/protocol/InfoSheetStateAward.doc for an information sheet and application form.

Lismore Electorate Woman of the Year??

I wish to advise that nominations are being sought in relation to the 2006 Lismore Electorate Woman of the Year. There are so many women whose contributions, successes and achievements encourage and inspire. Honouring women for their contribution to our communities is an important means of building confidence and pride of all women, and encourages other women and girls by publicly presenting role models. Any woman can be nominated, such as a local teacher, nurse, a businesswoman, author, community worker, mother, volunteer or a sportsperson. I am encouraging nominations, forms are available from my office and the closing date has been extended to 25 January, my apologies for the short notice. Please do not hesitate to contact my office for further enquiries.

NSW Seniors Card - 2006 Local Business Directory

The NSW Seniors Card is a free program with leisure and savings benefits for retired and semi-retired NSW permanent residents aged over 60. The NSW Seniors Card provides cardholders with access to NSW public transport concessions and discounts and benefits at thousands of businesses across NSW. The Seniors Card Unit produced an annual Discount Directory which was posted to all members across NSW in November 2005, however of more relevant and practicality, my office produces a local directory, specifically for the Northern Rivers. This local directory is currently being updated through our database of businesses who participate and offer discounts for the NSW Seniors Card. Any business wishing to know more information or how to participate should contact my office. Further information concerning the Directory or the Seniors Card program can be obtained by phoning the Seniors Card Hotline on 1300 364 758 (9am - 5pm week days), visiting the website at: www.seniorscard.nsw.gov.au or emailing: info@seniorscard.nsw.gov.au. Seniors Card Membership Applications are available by phoning or calling into my Electorate Office. They can also be downloaded from the internet site: www.seniorscard.nsw.gov.au

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