Weekly Update - Deadmans Creek Bridge works, Menai Mowers Opening, Parliament Resumes

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Weekly Update - Deadmans Creek Bridge works, Menai Mowers Opening, Parliament Resumes

Monday, 12 August 2013
Last week, Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) released the community issues report for the Deadmans Creek Bridge Upgrade Project. It is exciting to see this project edging closer to fruition.
 
The report responds to each of the issues raised in the 53 submissions they received during the consultation period.
 
It has been agreed that a replacement bridge will be constructed to the west of the current bridge, with a proposed width of 11.6 metres and 68 metres high. 
 
There will also be works carried out to improve the alignment of Heathcote Road near the bridge and some upgrades to the intersection at St George Crescent. Drainage issues on the southern approach will also be rectified during the modifications to the St George Crescent intersection to widen the left turn lanes into and out of St George Crescent at the intersection.
 
This is a great outcome for the road safety of all motorists who turn left at this intersection. I have also been assured the community will be updated before any work starts to replace the bridge. For more information on the proposed replacement of Deadmans Creek please visit www.rms.nsw.gov.au/roadprojects. 
 

On Thursday afternoon I was honoured to cut the ribbon at a newly opened Menai small business, Menai Mowers and Landscape Service. It was lovely to share the celebrations of business owner Hugh Anderson and his wife Michelle, and their two children Leah and Julian. I grew up amongst small business in the Sutherland Shire and know the value of running your own business in your own community. I wish them the best of luck with their new business venture and hope they are warmly welcomed by the Menai business community. 

Tomorrow Parliament resumes after a six week recess and I'm sure my fellow colleagues are rearing to get back to business. I know I'm looking forward to contributing to the upcoming legislation debates and fulfilling my parliamentary duties. You can catch some of the action by watching the online feed of the Legislative Assembly throughout the day. I know most people like to tune in during Question Time at 2.15pm. Just visit www.parliament.nsw.gov.au for all the information.

Hope you have a nice week!

 

VOTE OF CONFIDENCE IN THE NSW ECONOMY 

  • ANZ’s Australian Economic Update out this week is a huge vote of confidence in NSW, predicting the state will be central in leading the national economy as it transitions from the mining boom.
  • The report says the NSW economy “is now outperforming the rest of Australia” and this comes “after a decade when the NSW economy underperformed”.
  • The latest ABS Labour Force figures also out this week confirmed the 18th consecutive month that the NSW unemployment rate has been at or below the national average.
  • Since the O’Farrell Government came to office, NSW has created 115,400 jobs – more jobs than any other state in the country.
 

$92 MILLION FOR OVER 200 NEW BUSES AND 10 NEW ROUTES

  • The NSW Government has committed more than $90 million to fund over 200 new buses in 2013-14, including 65 new buses for Western Sydney.
  • There will also be 10 new routes introduced across Sydney, Western Sydney, the Hunter and the Illawarra as part of the Growth Bus Program.
  • We’ve added more than 2,800 additional weekly bus services since we came to Government and this year’s investment in growth buses shows we’re not stopping there.
 

FINANCIAL HELP FOR NSW FARMERS

  • Farmers in NSW can now access concessional loans of up to $650,000 as part of the Farm Finance Concessional Loans scheme. 
  • The NSW Government has agreed to terms with the Australian Government, allowing eligible farm businesses to restructure existing debt in the form of low-interest loans. 
  • Eligible producers can apply through the NSW Rural Assistance Authority for loans of up to $650,000 with a variable interest rate starting at 4.5 per cent.
  • The concessional interest rate will be reviewed on a six-monthly basis and may be varied to accord with prevailing economic conditions.
 

RESTART ILLAWARRA INFRASTRUCTURE FUND 

  • The first in a series of public forums has been held in Wollongong, to allow residents to have their say about the projects shortlisted for the NSW Government’s $100 million Restart Illawarra Infrastructure Fund. 
  • The fund was set up using proceeds from the long term lease of Port Kembla. 
  • This fund aims to identify infrastructure projects that will improve economic growth and productivity in the Illawarra.
  • Successful projects will be announced in late 2013. For more information visit  www.insw.com  
 

HEAVY PENALTIES FOR HEAVY VEHICLES BEGIN

  • Tough regulations have come into effect for people who drive overheight or overlength trucks into Sydney’s tunnels and Galston Gorge.
  • The changes are aimed at preventing traffic chaos caused by oversized trucks becoming stuck in restricted areas, and enable RMS to suspend the heavy vehicle registration of rogue operators for three months.
  • The penalties are additional to penalties rogue drivers personally face – a $2,200 fine and the loss of six demerit points.
  • The changes also apply to interstate vehicles, which can be banned from entering NSW for three months.
 

TRANSPORT INTERCHANGE UPGRADES AT 36 KEY LOCATIONS

  • The NSW Government is upgrading 36 key transport interchanges across the state – investing almost $40 million to make public transport safer and easier to use. 
  • Interchanges need to be well lit, secure, sign-posted, protected from the elements and easy for people to navigate.
  • These latest upgrades include better drop off and pick up areas - called kiss and ride zones, improved lighting, signs, infrastructure, bike facilities and shelters.
 

30 YEARS ON – REVIEW OF THE NSW ABORIGINAL LAND RIGHTS ACT

  • A series of forums across NSW will allow people to provide input on proposed changes to the NSW Aboriginal Land Rights Act.
  • As we celebrate the 30th anniversary of an act that enshrined Aboriginal land rights in law there is also a realisation that to achieve better outcomes, changes must be made. 
  • Reforms designed to cut unnecessary red tape, improve the land claim process, improve management of social housing schemes and reform of the regulatory framework are up for discussion.
  • Details are available at www.oralra.nsw.gov.au/alrareview.html or http://www.aboriginalaffairs.nsw.gov.au/alra/legislative-review  
 

NEW SMALL BIZ BUS FOR REGIONAL NSW

  • A second Small Biz Bus was launched in Young with two buses delivering expert business advice tailored to small business owners in rural and regional NSW. 
  • Since the launch of first Small Biz Bus in December last year the bus has visited more than 100 locations, and by the end of this month the first bus would have completed more than 1,000 face-to-face advisory sessions. 
  • Feedback to date has been extremely positive, with more than 97 per cent of small business owners saying the service was helpful. 
  • The Small Biz Bus is part of the NSW Government’s Small Biz Connect program and provides services including translation services, and advice to small business owners affected by disasters such as bushfires and floods. 
 

MILLIONS TO BE SAVED FROM LED STREETLIGHT ROLLOUT

  • Councils across Sydney, the Central Coast and the Hunter are set to save millions of dollars in maintenance and energy costs under a proposed rollout of LED streetlights.
  • Under the plan 41 local councils will become the first in Australia to be part of a grid-wide rollout of the energy saving technology.
  • The lifespan of LEDs is expected to be more than 20 years, meaning councils will pay a lot less for both maintenance and power.
 

STRICTLY BALLROOM THE MUSICAL TO PREMIERE IN SYDNEY

  • Sydney has been chosen over the likes of London and New York to host the global premiere of one of the most anticipated musicals in recent times, Strictly Ballroom The Musical.
  • Co-writer and creator Baz Luhrmann attended the launch at Sydney Town Hall with NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell.
  • The much-loved Australian film that inspired the world to dance will come to life on stage in a brand new musical theatre production that will make its global premiere in Sydney from 25 March 2014. 
  • The show has huge appeal and will attract audiences from all over Australia and across the globe, and is expected to generate more than $20 million in visitor expenditure for NSW over a six month run.
 

SYDNEY FESTIVAL STUNNING AQUATIC HEADLINE ACT 

  • The headline act for the 2014 Sydney Festival has been announced - a spectacular aquatic retelling of the oldest love story in English opera, Henry Purcell’s Baroque opera, Dido & Aeneas. 
  • The opera will feature 50 dancers, singers and musicians and a giant raised water tank into which dancers dive and perform underwater.
  • The NSW Government is providing over $5 million to support the 2014 Sydney Festival 
  • Information on the 2014 Sydney Festival is available from www.sydneyfestival.org.au