NBN and mobile phone infrastructure positive news for Indi - July 25, 2014
Posted July 25, 2014
Independent Member for Indi, Cathy McGowan AO, has welcomed the news that significant NBN infrastructure will be delivered to Indi residents hindered by slow, or no, internet connections.
Ms McGowan recently met with NBN Co and staff from Minister for Communications Malcolm Turnbull’s office to represent the communications needs of the electorate. Ms McGowan was informed a number of fixed wireless NBN towers are planned for construction across Indi and made the announcement today at Wodonga to local media outlets (pictured).
Four wireless NBN towers have been completed in Indi—Baddaginnie, Benalla North, Benalla South and Tungamah —and six are under construction at Dederang, Kiewa, Kiewa South, Corryong, Ebden and Wandiligong.
“We are beginning to see progress in the NBN roll out across Indi and this will be welcomed by householders who want improved internet capability,” Ms McGowan said.
“This is delivering on my election commitment to work with the Government to fix the telecommunications problems in Indi. I will continue to represent people’s needs to Government as this infrastructure program continues. The public is anxious to know what the full rollout plan is for Indi and I expect more positive news to be announced in coming months.
Ms McGowan is convening a meeting to discuss the potential for co-location of mobile phone infrastructure on NBN towers. This is one low-cost solution for improving mobile phone coverage and key stakeholders including Telstra, councils, NBN Co have been invited to attend.
The Indi LGA Black Spot Committee provided nominations for potential mobile phone towers to be submitted to the Federal Government’s $100 million Mobile Black Spot Programme. Ms McGowan submitted three high-priority locations per the Federal Government request. These were Mansfield Shire, Bunstons Road Tolmie; Alpine Shire, Kancoona; and Murrindindi Shire, Skyline Road, Lake Eildon. Ms McGowan said these were only suggested sites and the Government would make the final decision on where towers would be constructed, if any.
“Mobile phone coverage is vital for personal and community safety — it also underpins rural resilience and growth,” Ms McGowan said. “Black spots remain a major risk for people in many parts of our bushfire prone region, and we must fix them as soon as possible. These three locations meet the major requirements we decided upon during the planning process.”
In Question Time on July 17, in the continued fight to get results for Indi, Ms McGowan asked Mr Turnbull what the solution was for providing every Australian with assured mobile phone coverage, regardless of where they were in the country.
“We need a plan for the nation to meet the huge demand. I called on the Government, which centred its Budget on infrastructure, to provide details on how it would meet this vital infrastructure need,” Ms McGowan said.