Local, Independant and Effective

Indi Weekly Scoop 21 October 2016

Indi Expats in Canberra met with Cathy last week to talk about their lives and their ongoing links with Indi. If you are an Indi Expat let us know and we can keep in touch. Email cathy.mcgowan.mp@aph.gov.au


Rural and regional Australians need access to more data not less
The Australian Bureau of Statistics has said it doesn’t have the resources it needs to carry out all its current functions, and regional economic data is one area that’s coming under review. There’s a risk the ABS may cease providing this vital data. In Question Time Cathy asked the Minister for Small Business Michael McCormack for reassurance that it will continue to be provided.

Water authority to come to Wodonga
The Murray Darling Basin Authority is coming to Wodonga to speak directly with landholders affected by water releases from Lake Hume weir. People can register their interest in attending by contacting Cathy’s office.

Time to find a way forward on marriage equality
Cathy has urged all parties to come together in good faith to respectfully discuss marriage equality:  “My first preference has always been for a conscience vote by the Parliament on marriage equality. In the absence of a conscience vote I agreed to support the plebiscite... I call on all parties to come together in good faith to respectfully discuss the process from here."


Wangaratta – China relationship value recognised
The Rural City of Wangaratta’s relationship with sister city Suzhou will create opportunities for businesses large and small, parliament heard this week. Cathy said in a three minute speech that she would do what she can to support the ongoing relationship.

Upper Murray petition asking for 2030 Vision Plan funding tabled in parliament
Cathy tabled a petition in parliament this week on behalf of the Upper Murray community calling for funding for aspects of their 2030 Vision Plan. In her speech Cathy congratulated the Vision Plan committee for their hard work and acknowledged the federal government’s support for the Upper Murray under the recent National Stronger Regions Fund round.

Wangaratta Jazz and Blues Festival shout out
It’s nearly time for the Wangaratta Jazz and Blues Festival and there may be some extra visitors from Canberra this year if the response to Cathy’s speech to the House praising the festival is anything to go by.

St Michael’s students visit Canberra
Students from St Michael’s Tallangatta toured Parliament House this week and learned about parliament through some role playing. They met Lachlan Matthews, an Indi Expat who is now studying engineering at ANU and who has spent time with Cathy’s team this week. Read about school visits to Parliament House here.

Parliamentary business
In other business this week Cathy seconded Andrew Wilkie’s Australian Postal Corporation (Unsolicited Political Communications) Bill 2016.
Legislation that passed the house:


Benalla’s LUEY theatre group secures grant for workshop
Congratulations to LUEY (Let Us Entertain You) in Benalla who have been awarded a Quick Response Grant of $2,315 by Regional Arts Victoria for a theatre workshop.

Benalla Rural City Council to receive funding to cover munitions plant rates
Cathy has welcomed the government’s announcement that it will give Benalla Rural City Council $448,000 to cover the loss of rates from the Thales munitions plant. The government announced earlier this year that as a Commonwealth asset, the property was not liable for rates.


Have your say on improving banks’ whistleblower protections
The Australian Bankers’ Association has opened public consultation on how banks can better support and protect staff who call our poor behaviour that harms customers. The proposed principles are at www.betterbanking.net.au and submissions can be emailed to submissions@bankers.asn.au before 2 November.

Temporary Sponsored Parent Visas
The government has released a discussion paper on the introduction of a Temporary Sponsored Parent Visa and is asking for community input. The Discussion Paper is available at www.border.gov.au and public submissions can be emailed to temporary.parent.visa@border.gov.au before 31 October.

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