Local, Independant and Effective

Indi Weekly Scoop March 18, 2016

Posted March 18, 2016



Backflip on way for backpacker tax?

Farmers and small tourism operators will welcome the Government review into the backpacker tax proposal. On Wednesday, Minister for Tourism, Senator Richard Colbeck, announced the review and will consult with a wide range of industries, including agriculture and tourism. In response to the concern of constituents, Cathy called on the Government to backflip on the backpacker tax increase in Question Time on February 11. Following the review announcement, she congratulated the Victorian Farmers Federation and National Farmers’ Federation on its campaign to call on the Government to change its policy. The backpacker tax proposal would see an increase from 19 per cent to 32.5 per cent from 1 July onwards. Cathy supports keeping the current rate.

Private trucking operators want brakes on pay rate changes

Local private trucking operators are urging the Government for a six-month extension on the decision to introduce a minimum pay rate for contract truck drivers. Cathy supports this call and has written to Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Darren Chester, and Minister for Employment, Senator Michaelia Cash, calling on the Government to take action on the concerns of local owner-operators in the transport industry. 

Show your love for our ABC

ABC Friends are holding a Forum on 7 April in Wodonga. Everyone is invited to attend the Cube at 5.30pm for a Friends of ABC Forum in a show of support for ‘Aunty’. The forum will feature local politicians and candidates, and former Age managing director and ABC radio presenter Ranald Macdonald. Cathy supports strong regional media and the ABC helps give regional Australia a voice, as well as the role it plays during emergencies.

Voting in Parliament

This week in Parliament Cathy voted against the Migration Amendment (Character Cancellation Consequential Provisions) Bill 2016. The Law Council of Australia in a submission to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee opposed the passage of this Bill. Cathy shares the Law Council advice on the amendments, where they state “that the Bill’s amendments depart from the accepted rule of law and procedural fairness standards.” The reasons the Government have provided for this amendment do not justify departing from the accepted rule of law and procedural fairness.

House of Reps legislation passed – March 15-17

Biological Control Amendment

Territories Legislation Amendment

Passenger Movement Charge amendment (Norfolk Island)

Law and Justice Legislation Amendment (Northern Territory Local Court)

Migration Amendment (Character Cancellation Consequential Provisions)

Transport Security Amendment (Serious or Organised Crime)

Treasury Legislation Amendment (Repeal Day 2015)

Registration of Deaths Abroad Amendment

Social Services legislation Amendment (Enhanced welfare Payment Integrity)

Primary Industries Levies and Charges collection Amendment


Youth Politics Camp 2016 - future leaders discuss and debate democracy

Arts in Indi helping grow strong cultural economy

Thoona Wheelie Bin Championships - fastest bins in Indi

Upper Ovens Landcare Group - Alpine environment in safe hands

Kevington petitions Government for better mobile phone coverage

Question Time

How is Government tackling cross-border red-tape issues?

Get involved!

Enhance your leadership skills

People aged 18 to 24 and who live, work or study in Wodonga are encouraged to apply for Wodonga Council's youth leadership program. The free six-month program develops leaders through skills sessions, guest speakers, training, mentoring, community projects, and more. Applications close Friday, 1 April, 2016. Information here.


  • Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal

°         Small Grants for Rural Communities – Closes 24 March. Grants up to $5000 are available. Priority is given to communities of 10,000 or under. Information here

°         Community Group Futures – Round 2 Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund funded projects for not–for-profit organisations working with 2009 bushfire affected communities. Closes 15 April. Information here

  • Tomorrow: Today Foundation – Benalla Community Grants. Funding priorities include families with young children, youth development and community connectedness. Closes 31 March. Information here.
  • Marysville and Triangle Community Foundation - Bushfire Recovery Fund and Triangle Community Development Fund grants open now. Funds support recovery and community projects in the Marysville and Triangle area. Open now, close November 2016. Information here.
  • Commonwealth Bank Community Grants – Grants of up to $10,000 are available for youth-focused projects to help improve the health and wellbeing of young people. Applications close 28 March 2016. Information here.
  • Community Heritage Grants - up to $15,000 to community organisations, archives, museums, genealogical and historical societies, multicultural and Indigenous groups. The grants are provided to assist with the preservation of locally owned, but nationally significant collections of materials that are publicly accessible. Applications close 9 May 2016. Information here.

Cathy’s diary

Saturday, 19 March – Benalla Wall to Wall Jam, Benalla Skate Park – 9.30am; official opening Anglican Parish of Benalla Fete – 10am; Thoona Wheelie Bin Championship 2016 – 12pm

Sunday, 20 March – Cathy joining the Yackandandah Choir to sing ‘Happy!’ and ‘Ground Control to Major Tom’ – 12pm

Wednesday, 23 March – Wodonga Middle Years visit – 9am; Wodonga South Primary School – 10am


IMAGE: Cathy meets with Marie Sellstrom (Merrijig), Freida Andrews (Benalla) and Diana Cherry (Marysville), members of the Grandmothers Against Detention of Refugee Children from Indi, in Parliament to put their case forward for a change of Government policy.


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