Weekly Update - Southern Sydney Community Health Forum, Community Building Partnerships reminder

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Weekly Update - Southern Sydney Community Health Forum, Community Building Partnerships reminder

Friday, 12 July 2013
Here we are again. Have you had a good week? It's the end of the school holidays again and I'm sure many parents will be looking forward to seeing their kids back to school next week!
 
As I mentioned in last week's post, I joined the Minister for Health at Sutherland Hospital for a visit of the construction works in progress. I then attended the Southern Sydney Community Health Forum at Hurstville and listened to the community's issues. The Minister was also there to talk about all the good work being done by the State Government to help NSW Health to continue to grow and prosper. She also focused on the importance of the consumers, the patients and their families and how their experience of the health system must be a positive one.
 
Also, I should remind all community groups and not for profit organisations that the Community Building Partnerships Scheme is still taking applications until the end of July. It is a great program to help community organisations get infrastructure projects and repairs funded. Check out all the details at www.communitybuildingpartnerships.nsw.gov.au
 
Have a great weekend!
 
State Update:
 

KINGS CROSS PLAN OF MANAGEMENT A SUCCESS SO FAR

  • The implementation of the Kings Cross Plan of Management has so far been a success with a one third drop in the number of violent incidents in licensed premises.
  • Under the plan, the NSW Government committed to increasing the power of police in the area, strengthening the regulation of licensed venues, improving the late night transport and creating safer public spaces in Kings Cross.
  • We introduced a range of tough new conditions for licensed premises, including a licence freeze and restrictions on what drinks could be served after midnight. 
  • The NSW Government is on target to deliver an additional 859 police officers across NSW, as well as giving them extra powers and options like Sobering Up Cells, new ‘move on powers’ and introduced the offence of Intoxicated and Disorderly, and expanded the use of drug dogs.
 

NSW UNEMPLOYMENT FALLS AGAIN 

  • NSW has bucked the national trend and recorded a fall in unemployment from 5.5 per cent to 5.4 per cent in June.
  • This is the 17th consecutive month NSW’s unemployment rate has been below the national average, which rose to 5.7 per cent.
  • Since coming to office the NSW Liberals & Nationals Government has created 123,900 new jobs – more than any other state in the country. 
  • Our changes to payroll tax in last month’s budget and the boost to our Jobs Action Plan will continue to support the creation of new jobs in NSW.
 

OPAL CARD TAKES OFF AS CUSTOMERS FAREWELL QUEUES

  • More than 10,000 Opal cards have been distributed, meaning these customers may never queue for a ticket again. 
  • Since launching the Opal, we have now had more than 10,000 cards ordered by customers – and that is 10,000 less people who will have to queue up to buy tickets at ferry wharves or train stations on these selected routes. 
  • Under Opal, the NSW Government is offering a discount of up to 8 per cent compared with single paper ticket prices and a further 30 per cent discount for all journeys off-peak journeys.
  • The NSW Government is proud to be delivering Sydney a world class electronic ticketing system after years of failure and incompetence under the former Labor Government. 
 

WARATAHS GO WEST – AND NORTH

  • Waratah trains have started running on the Western Line for the first time, meaning those from Richmond, Riverstone, Emu Plains, Penrith, St Marys, Parramatta and Granville will be able to catch one.
  • Upper North Shore customers will also benefit with necessary power upgrades allowing Waratah trains to now service the Western Line.
  • So far the NSW Government has delivered 45 of 78 Waratahs since July 2011, meaning 85 per cent of Sydney trains are now air-conditioned – up from around 70 per cent when we were elected.
  • The entire Waratah project was on the brink of collapse when we came to Government and not one carriage had been delivered so it is so pleasing our hard work to save the project and do the work to prepare the Western Line for these trains – which hadn’t been completed by Labor – has been a success.
 

LIONS GIVE SYDNEY ITS BIGGEST WEEK SINCE THE OLYMPICS

  • The Wallabies may have gone down to the British & Irish Lions on the field, but the NSW tourism industry has been the big winner overall.
  • The British & Irish Lions tour has delivered outstanding results for the local visitor economy, with tourists flocking to NSW and filling hotels at rates not seen since the 2000 Olympics. 
  • Accor’s eight CBD hotels were at 94 per cent occupancy while the Four Seasons was completely sold out from Thursday to Sunday, mostly by visiting Lions’ fans. 
  • Sydney is the home of major sporting events in July – Wednesday’s third and deciding State of Origin match is a sell-out and we’ll also welcome one of the world’s biggest football clubs, Manchester United.
 

FIXING THE TRAINS: WI-FI CENTRAL

  • Intercity and regional customers will for the first time have free internet coverage at Central Station.
  • Wi-Fi hot spots were switched on this week on the Grand Concourse and regional platforms (1-15), allowing more than 180,000 customers travelling through Central Station each day to stay connected. 
  • Free internet access is a real value-add for our customers and just one of the many initiatives being rolled out as part of the Fixing the Trains improvements the NSW Government is implementing across rail. 
  • Train customers already have uninterrupted mobile phone and internet coverage inside train tunnels on the City Circle Line and between Central Station and Chatswood. 
 

CHARITIES THE BIG WINNER FROM MONORAIL CLOSURE

  • Five children’s charities will share in more than $70,000 donated by the generous people of NSW after the Sydney Monorail drew record crowds over its farewell weekend. 
  • Last month the NSW Government announced that all revenue from ticket sales would be donated to five chosen charities, and as a result 15,000 people turned out to be part of history.
  • Ticket proceeds from the final weekend have today been donated to Camp Quality, CanTeen, Make-A-Wish Australia, The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, and Youth Off The Streets.
  • The monorail decommissioning is now underway, and the infrastructure will soon be gradually removed, with major demolition activities to be completed early next year. For more information on the removal project, go to http://www.transport.nsw.gov.au/projects-monorail-removal-project
 

WYNYARD WALK TO BARANGAROO TAKES SHAPE

  • The Wynyard Walk, which will provide a new, underground pedestrian link from Wynyard Station to the intersection of Kent and Napoleon Streets to allow pedestrian access to the new Barangaroo precinct, is on track to be open to customers in 2015.
  • The plaza will provide a welcoming and safe meeting place and connect the underground walkway with a new Sussex Street pedestrian bridge, also being constructed as part of Wynyard Walk.
  • It will be designed to have capacity for 20,000 pedestrians per hour, to prepare for the influx of workers and visitors when Barangaroo is fully developed. 
 

NEW ERA OF HEALTH CARE BEGINS AT TAMWORTH HOSPITAL

  • The first sod has been turned to mark the start of construction on the new $220 million Tamworth Hospital.
  • The five-storey redevelopment of the hospital will transform the delivery of health care to the people of Tamworth and surrounding communities.
  • To be completed in 2016, the new acute services building will provide new facilities for vital services including emergency; operating theatres, day surgery and recovery; an Intensive Care and High Dependency Unit (ICU/HDU); and Paediatric unit (children’s ward).
  • The NSW Government is committed to ensuring rural and regional communities receive best quality health care - our major investment in hospital redevelopments at Tamworth, Bega, Wagga Wagga, Dubbo and Port Macquarie exemplifies this commitment.
 

GOVERNMENT TO MARKET SECOND TRANCHE OF PROPERTY ASSETS

  • The NSW Government has announced plans to market a second portfolio of property assets, following the successful sale of seven government office buildings earlier this year.
  • The NSW Government will pursue the sale of the Lands Building, currently occupied by Planning NSW, the Education Building in Bridge Street, the Ausgrid Building at 570 George Street and vacant land in Waterloo Road, Macquarie Park.
  • The sandstone buildings in Bridge Street have the potential for a range of uses – both are located centrally in the business district, close to Circular Quay and all transport services.
  • The current heritage and planning controls in place for these two landmark buildings will ensure their unique nature is respected and protected.
  • The first tranche of government offices sale exceeded expectations in reaping $405 million, the bulk of which is being directed to the Housing Acceleration Fund to increase the availability of new housing.