Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Labor's NBN promise to Thornton


Shadow Minister for Communication, Jason Clare today visited Thornton alongside Labor Candidate for Paterson Meryl Swanson to deliver his promise of providing 19-thousand homes and businesses in Thornton with fibre to the-premises NBN if a Labor government wins this Saturday's federal election.

Across the Hunter Labor have promised to deliver fiber-to-the-premises to over 50,000 homes and businesses.

Jason Clare says Thornton deserves a better rate version of the NBN and not the 'fraudband' the coalition are rolling out.

"When I was here last year I met a nurse who has to climb on her roof to download her roster. She has to get on her roof with a laptop and a dongle. That is how bad it is her in Thornton."

Meryl Swanson says Labor's proper NBN is going to make a difference to not only peoples lives but also their livelihoods.

"Let me tell you it [the coalitions NBN] is not teething problems, it is a design problem. One we will fix with fibre to the premise NBN."

Labor says it's network costs less than the coalitions to operate due to not having the cost of putting in new copper, not having the cost of fixing the old copper and not having the cost of the electricity that comes with running the 30,000 nodes that come with Malcolm Turnbull's copper version of the NBN.

"Australia has dropped from 30th in the world to 60th in the world over the past 3 years due to Malcolm Turnbull rolling out second rate copper." Mr. Clare Said.

Labor have capped their NBN spend at $57 billion.

Shadow Minister for Communication Jason Clare in Thornton today.

Hunter City Deal


Lake Macquarie City Council is proposing a partnership with the Federal and State governments to pilot a Hunter City Deal as a part of  Malcom Turnbull's  Smart Cities Policy.

The proposal was backed unanimously by the elected council and is expected to generate nearly 10, 700 new jobs with an economic output of $4.2 billion per year.

General Manager Brian Bell says it will benefit the community in more ways than one, and is about more than just the Glendale Interchange.

"It's a deal delivering more than just the Lake Macquarie transport interchange which is a really big issue for us. It could deliver a number of community and recreational facilities and other road infrastructure projects which are very important in that particular region."

The area is already a large employer in the Hunter and the deal is expected to generate a further 10, 700 new jobs as well as 7, 650 new dwellings which will be a significant boost for the region.

The required investment from both public and private sectors to deliver the Hunter City Deal is $1.2 billion over a decade.

Erosion solution for Stockton Beach


Lord Mayor of Newcastle Nuatalie Nelmes says she believes an underground breakwall could be the solution to the erosion problem on Stockton Beach and will also provide the foundation for the future extension of Bathers Way, which she hopes will continue onto Stockton.

Cr Nelmes will bring forward a mayoral minute at tonights meeting where she will seek the support of engineers to investigate the viability of constructing a rock wall to protect the beachfront. The rock wall if built, will consist of 500 meters of boulders, from the southern end of the beach to meet the existing wall at the northern end.

The beachfront was severely damaged earlier this month during an east coast low which resulted in the worst erosion at Stockton Beach in living memory.

Cr Nelmes said the construction of a rock wall with the right underpinnings will also allow future extension of the Bathers Way walk.

"By ensuring our assets are properly protected we will have the opportunity to extend the bathers walk that now goes from Mereweather through to Nobbys. I would like to see it cross over at the ferry and come all the way around the Stockton foreshore."

Council in the past have commissioned several reports on preventing erosion around the Stockton Beach area. A lot of the outcomes were over $30 million and were not implemented.

Cr Nelmes is looking for a more cost effective solution that can actually be implemented.

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes at Stockton Beach. Photo courtesy of The Newcastle Herald

$15 million for Testers Hollow


A re-elected Turnbull government will commit $15 million to elevating Cessnock Road at Testers Hollow.

Minister for Major Projects Paul Fletcher alongside Liberal Candidate for Paterson Karen Howard, announced this morning that the funding is available and will cover 80 per-cent of the full cost of the project.

The minister says he is confident the funding will successfully mitigate flood risk in the area.

"The flood events of the kind that we saw last year will be very much mitigated. This is a plan so that residents, for example here in Gillieston Heights, won't face the same risk of being cut off for several days as occurred last year."

The growing suburb of Gillieston Heights was cut off for six days after devastating floods left them isolated in April last year.

"I want to emphasise, every commitment we make falls within our overall plan and our budgetary commitments. This commitment that we're making today, this commitment to spend $15 million in elevating Cessnock Road at Testers Hollow meets and fits within our overall plan."

Heartless Thieves Steal Latop With Priceless Photos Ahead Of Funeral


 The search is on for the stolen laptop full of irreplaceable photos of Carrington man, Jackson Baker as his family prepares for the 20-year-old's funeral today at Newcastle's Christ Church Cathedral.

Thieves broke into his parents home at The Hill on Sunday night and stole the Apple MacBook which also contained the Eulogy - they also made off with a camera.

Jackson disappeared while walking home after a night out on June 16.

His body was discovered six days later at Stockton.

Jackson Baker

Newcastle Council Considers Suing State Government Over Forced Merger


 Newcastle Council is considering heading to court in a bid to stop a merger with Port Stephens.

Greens councillors will ask their colleagues to support a motion at tonight's meeting to take legal action if the state government ends up pushing ahead with amalgamation.

Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes reportedly likes the idea but critics have labelled it a waste of ratepayers money.

Safety Concerns for Newcastle's Future Light Rail


The Rail, Tram and Bus Union has accused the NSW Government of failing to add important safety features on the proposed new light rail cars in Newcastle.

This has raised concerns that the Government is trying to cut costs at the expense of passenger safety.

The trams allegedly lack Automatic Train Protection devices, which monitor track conditions and maintain the safe operation of the trams.

Divisional Secretary of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union Chris Preston says the cost of these anti-collision safety devices is worth any expense to ensure the safety of passengers.

"Trams around the world and Australia have this device," says Mr Preston.

"Now we have got time to get involved and make sure that the Newcastle trams, they need to have them on."

A proposed image of a Light Rail tram turning into Newcastle's Hunter Street
Source: The Newcastle Herald