Indi Weekly Scoop Festive Edition
Posted December 18, 2015
Season’s Greetings! Cathy thanks everyone for their contribution to making the North East a special place. In recognising the high level of community service in Indi, it’s important we come together as a community at Christmas time and acknowledge the efforts in caring for each other throughout the year. Christmas is the ideal time to connect with neighbours and to make that special effort to welcome people to our community, and join in community barbecues and gatherings to celebrate the festive season. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
The highlight for the year was Indi getting the third highest number of mobile phone towers in Australia under the $100 million Mobile Black Spot Programme. The strategic approach and effective lobbying from Cathy and the Indi Telecommunications Action Group resulted in 30 new stations being funded. This means almost 200 mobile phone black spots will be eliminated. Indi received about one-third of the mobile phone towers to be constructed in Victoria under Round One of the MBSP. There have also been big advances in internet coverage. NBN Co have committed to servicing about 55,000 premises in more than 35 towns across Indi in the fixed wireless NBN tower and fixed line rollout. This will deliver access to 21st-century digital technology right across the electorate. Indi also received $17 million from Federal Government’s Stronger Regions Fund. This funding is vital for infrastructure projects to help Indi communities grow. Indi matters and funding continues to flow for projects and services.
Cathy welcomed 46 Indi schools and leadership groups to Parliament House to learn about Australian politics. This was a highlight of the 2015 Parliamentary year and Cathy looks forward to seeing more young people visit Canberra next year.
Voting record – (November 2013-December 2015)
477 bills presented to House of Representatives
391 passed by the House of Representatives
362 occasions Cathy voted with Government (on the voices and by division), 29 occasions with Opposition
8 occasions voted against Government and opposition
Full voting record online.
Speech record – (November 2013-December 2015) – 272 – speech details online
Indi communities matter!
Congratulations to the Benalla Skate Park Youth Committee and Benalla Rural City Council for receiving $18,125 in Federal funding. The Benalla Skate Park will be upgraded as part of the Benalla Lake Revitalisation Project. Projects in Chiltern, Myrtleford, Tungamah and Yea received $58,000. Cathy established the Indi Stronger Communities Programme Advisory Committee to assess Stronger Communities Programme (SCP) applications. Groups are encouraged to apply for funding to build community-based projects through their council by January 15.
SAVE THE DATE – Indi Community Summit Report launch
On October 24 in Benalla, the most significant community engagement event during Cathy’s term took place, when the inaugural Indi Summit was held. More than 220 people took part, bringing much enthusiasm and many ideas. This was the culmination of the Budget Impact Tour, Kitchen Table Conversations and Get in Cathy’s Ear Postcard community consultation. The Indi Community Summit report will be launched on Wednesday, 27 January 2016 in Wodonga at Huon Hill Hotel. The report is being compiled and more information on the Indi Summit can be found online, including discussion notes from each facilitated session. Register for the Indi Community Summit Report Launch at the website. IMAGE: Zac, Matilda, Jessy, Lachie and Ayden with Cathy at the Benalla Skate Park to talk about the exciting upgrade project.
Have your say
Cathy encourages community feedback on Government inquiries relevant to regional Australia.
Arts - The House of Representatives Standing Committee on Communications and the Arts is holding an inquiry into the importance of public and commercial broadcasting, online content and live production to rural and regional Australia, including the arts, news and other services. Submissions are being taken until 5 February 2016. Terms of reference and submission information can be found here.
Transport and economic growth - The Standing Committee on Infrastructure, Transport and Cities has launched an inquiry into increased transport connectivity and economic activity, with a focus on value-capture as a funding mechanism for infrastructure development. Terms of reference and submission information can be found online. Submissions close on 12 February 2016.
Innovation - Australia’s Future in Research and Innovation Trade and Investment Growth Committee will investigate how the research and innovation sector can better assist in overcoming Australia’s geographic, economic, and labour challenges. There is also a focus on commercialisation including, how technology imports and exports could be further facilitated. Submissions close 11 February 2016 and can be made here.
ABC - Australian Broadcasting Corporation Amendment (Rural and Regional Advocacy) Bill 2015. The inquiry will look at how the Australian Broadcasting Corporation delivers services in regional Australia. Submissions 26 February 2016 and can be submitted here.
° Federal Government’s Business Consultation website connects business with Australian Government departments and agencies in one place. Learn more here.
° Catalyst – Australian Arts and Culture Fund will fund $12 million in projects each year to arts organisations. Projects that increase participation of regional Australians in the arts will be prioritised. To see guidelines and eligibility criteria, visit the Ministry for the Arts website.
° National Stronger Regions Fund - Round 3 opens on 15 January 2016 and closes 15 March 2016. Communities are encouraged to liaise with their local council about submissions for community-based projects. Information here.
° Stronger Communities Programme – Round 2 applications close 15 January 2016. Community groups are encouraged to make applications through their local council. Information here.