News

  • BILL INTRODUCED TO REDUCE DAYLIGHT SAVINGS BY ONE MONTH

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest is hopeful Daylight Saving in NSW will end a month earlier next year if a Bill introduced in State Parliament today is successful.

    “While the issue of daylight saving always provokes a passionate debate – some people love it and some want it gone completely – most people agree that the last month is a pain, it simply drags on for too long”, Mr Provest said.

    A Private Members Bill – the Standard Time Amendment (Daylight Saving Period Reduction) Bill – was introduced in the State’s Upper House today by Nationals MLC Trevor Khan.

    “The Bill essentially reverses the extension to daylight saving which was pushed through Parliament with little consultation in 2007,” Mr Provest said.

    “I’ve been working on this legislation with my Nationals colleagues from country NSW, particularly the new Parliamentary Secretary for Northern NSW, Adam Marshall, who has also been a passionate advocate for change,

    If successful, the legislation will bring the end of Daylight Saving forward one month, from the first Sunday in April to the first Sunday in March each year. The change would take effect for the upcoming Daylight Saving period.

    Mr Provest advised that the majority of residents in Tweed don’t have a problem with Daylight Saving as such, but become frustrated with the confusion caused by the different time zone in Queensland for much of the year.

    “The consequences are not only social but are also economic, impacting on business, and disrupting family life in this cross-border community,” Mr Provest said.

    “I think it’s a good comprise. We’ll still have five months of daylight saving but the final and most troublesome month will be removed.”

    Mr Provest said he expected the Bill to be debated in parliament before the end of the year

  • FAMILIES WIN WITH PRESCHOOL FUNDING BOOST

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest has welcomed an additional $115 million in funding to make early childhood education more affordable for local families and reduce fees by an average of 30 per cent.

    Mr Provest said the NSW Government is committed to providing universal access to quality early childhood education. This funding will reduce preschool fees for four and five year olds and remove nearly all fees for children from Aboriginal and low-income families at preschool.

    “This is fantastic news for local families with young children,” Mr Provest said.

    “This funding boost will deliver the largest single fee reduction in NSW history, making preschool more affordable so that more children will be able to participate in 600 hours – or about 15 hours per week – of early childhood education in community preschools and long day care centres in the year before they start school.

    “I know the preschools here in Tweed make a big difference to the lives of our children.

    “This funding boost shows the NSW Government is serious about helping more families access early childhood education, especially for children from Aboriginal or low-income backgrounds.”

    Starting in 2017, community preschools across the State who enrol children for at least 600 hours in the year before school will receive increased subsidies from the NSW Government, enabling them to reduce fees for families.

    “Research shows that a quality preschool education for at least 600 hours gives children a head start in their learning journey,” said Mr Provest

    “We want all children in NSW to enjoy the benefits of a quality early education, wherever they live and whatever their background,” he said.

  • TWEED GETS EMERGENCY SERVICES BOOST

    State-of-the-art rescue rafts and hand-held fire ground radios have been rolled out to Tweed emergency service volunteers following a grant from the NSW Government.

    Minister for Emergency Services David Elliott today visited the volunteers with Member for Tweed Geoff Provest to inspect the new equipment at the NSW State Emergency Service (NSW SES) Tweed Heads Unit and the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) Cudgen brigade.

    NSW SES Tweed Heads Unit received four lightweight Ark Angel rescue rafts to the value of $5000 which are used during floods and other severe weather.

    Volunteers from this NSW SES unit completed 17 flood rescues during the recent East Coast Low/Severe Weather Event in June this year.

    Cudgen RFS received four hand-held fire ground radios valued at more than $3,200 which are used for tactical communications such as securing networks while fighting fires, conducting traffic control at incidents and in training.

    “We deeply value the work of our emergency services here in north eastern NSW and we want them working with the best equipment,” Mr Elliott said. “I know these rescue rafts and hand held radios will be put to good use.

    “The local community can rest assured their emergency services have the vital equipment they deserve as they go about their work.”

    Mr Provest thanked NSW SES Tweed Heads Unit and Cudgen RFS for the amazing work they do for the community in times of crisis.

    Mr Elliott also took the opportunity to remind residents that ‘Get Ready Weekend’ commences tomorrow. This initiative is about the community being prepared for disasters such as fires, floods or storms.

    “I urge every person to take a moment to sit down with their family and friends and discuss what they would do in the unfortunate instance of a disaster,” Mr Elliott said.

  • COURTESY MOORINGS UPGRADED AT COOK ISLAND

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest today announced the upgrade of four of the 13 courtesy moorings at Cook Island Aquatic Reserve. The upgrade will provide safer access for local tourism operators and protect delicate corals surrounding the Island.

    Cook Island Aquatic Reserve is a popular scuba diving and snorkelling site located 600 metres offshore from Fingal Head and four kilometres south-east of Tweed Heads in northern NSW.

    “The upgraded moorings have been designated as ‘commercial priority’ to cater for tourism vessels up to 15 metres in length,” Mr Provest said.

    “Recreational users of the reserve can still tie up at the nine remaining pink mooring buoys at all times, and can use the red mooring buoys when no commercial operators are present.

    “The courtesy moorings eliminate the need for users of the reserve to anchor and risk any damage to the complex rocky reefs.

    “The Cook Island corals are really healthy, and we want to keep them that way. We would prefer that boaters use the moorings rather than anchoring wherever possible.”

    Cook Island Aquatic Reserve includes a ‘no-take’ marine sanctuary surrounding the Island which is marked by yellow buoys.  Boaters must comply with the mooring code of conduct and must not leave vessels unattended.

    Green, hawksbill, and loggerhead turtles are regularly seen there, and the reserve is home to a diverse range of corals and fish.

    Several threatened or protected species also occur in the Reserve, including the giant Queensland groper, black rockcod, goldspotted rockcod and the grey nurse shark.

    Access onto the Island itself is not permitted, as it is an important nesting ground for seabirds.

    Further information about Cook Island Aquatic Reserve, including a map and the mooring code of conduct, can be found at www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fishing/marine-protected-areas/aquatic-reserves/cook-island-aquatic-reserve

  • NSW CRIME CONTINUES TO FALL OR REMAIN STABLE

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest has welcomed the latest statewide quarterly crime statistics that reveal 15 of the 17 major crime offences remain stable or are falling while two categories saw an upward trend.

    In the two years to June 2016, Fraud has risen 1.7 per cent while Steal from retail store has gone up 6.3 per cent across NSW.

    Supermarkets are the leading premises targeted in Steal from retail store, followed by department stores, shopping complexes, packaged liquor shops and clothes shops.

    Six categories remain stable while nine categories showed downward trends:

    • murder (down 32.1 per cent);
    • robbery without a weapon (down 25.9 per cent);
    • robbery with a firearm (down 41.7 per cent);
    • robbery with a weapon not a firearm (down 22.2 per cent);
    • break and enter dwelling (down 7.2 per cent);
    • motor vehicle theft (down 12.6 per cent);
    • steal from dwelling (down 6.6 per cent);
    • steal from person (down 9.9 per cent);
    • malicious damage to property (down 3.2 per cent).

    Mr Provest said the good results across the state were in large part due to proactive police work.

    “Similarly police in the Tweed community work tirelessly to ensure they detect and prevent crime,” Mr Provest said.

    Locally, the following major crime categories are seeing downward trends:

    • Assault-non-domestic violence related is down 23.5% (Tweed LGA)
    • Steal from motor vehicle is down 29.8% (Tweed LGA)

    “I’m really pleased to see these results and thank the community for doing their bit by reporting crime and remaining vigilant.

    “These results are testament to the great police work in our communities and I thank the NSW Police Force for their efforts.

  • GRANTS AVAILABLE FOR LOCAL SPORT AND RECREATION PROJECTS

    Community groups, sports clubs and councils in the Tweed are encouraged to apply for up to a million dollars to help them deliver an important sports infrastructure project for their communities.

    Member for Tweed, Geoff Provest is inviting local community groups, sports clubs and councils to apply for grants between $500,000 and $1 million for new or upgraded sport and recreation infrastructure projects.

    Mr Provest said these grants are being made available under the NSW Government’s 2016/17 ClubGRANTS program for projects providing modern and safe community facilities for people to take part in sport and recreation and improve fitness and well-being.

    “I encourage all eligible groups to consider submitting an application for a project that will make a real difference to the Tweed community,” Mr Provest said.

    “Particular emphasis will be placed on projects that benefit disadvantaged and regional and remote communities in this program round.

    “Over this term of government, around $50 million in ClubGRANTS will be provided to local communities across NSW to support three categories of infrastructure: sport and recreation, arts and culture and emergency relief facilities.”

    Deputy Premier Troy Grant said sport and sports clubs are a crucial part of any community and the NSW Government is proud to be able help improve facilities that are relied upon by so many.

    “Sport and recreation is part of our state’s social fabric and the NSW Government is committed to investing in facilities for our communities to enjoy for generations to come,” Mr Grant said.

    An applicant information pack is now available on the Liquor & Gaming NSW website www.liquorandgaming.justice.nsw.gov.au with expressions of interest closing on Friday 16 September 2016.

    Applications will be assessed by the independent ClubGRANTS fund committee and approved applicants will then be invited to lodge formal applications. Successful projects will be announced in 2017.

  • EXTRA SECURITY FOR NORTHERN NSW COURTS

    Northern NSW courts will be able to rapidly increase security at short notice following the arrival of new portable metal detectors, Member for Tweed Geoff Provest and Member for Lismore Thomas George have announced.

    The NSW Government has invested $67,000 in 13 portable metal detectors, which have been deployed to locations across NSW including Byron Bay, Lismore and Tweed Heads.

    “The portable metal detectors weigh less than fixed devices and are compact and collapsible so they can be easily transported to the location where they are needed,” said Mr Provest.

    Sheriff’s Officers will use the metal detectors to scan court users during high risk matters.

    The portable devices will operate when necessary at Byron Bay, Lismore and Tweed Heads and will be available to other courts in northern NSW.

    “Lismore Courthouse already has perimeter security, however the portable metal detector could be used to scan users of the annex building during certain care and protection cases and coronial hearings,” said Mr George.

    The rollout of the portable metal detectors follows a range of recent improvements to security in NSW courts.

    In the 2016-17 Budget, the NSW Government announced $5.2 million to extend the contracts of 40 new Sheriff’s Officers. Three of the new officers Sheriff’s Officers have been allocated to northern NSW courts.

    Ballistics vests are also expected to be made available to Sheriff’s Officers by the end of the year.

  • BACKUP FOR LIFE: SUPPORTING OUR FORMER OFFICERS

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest has welcomed $2 million in NSW Government funding towards a joint initiative with NSW Police Legacy to support former local police officers and their families.

    BACKUP for Life offers greater support to injured officers and their loved ones with coordinated programs and initiatives that recognise the contribution former officers have made while serving the community.

    Mr Provest said officers deserve all the support they can get as they transition to life outside the force.

    “Many officers carry physical and mental scars following years of service to the community and this can make the transition from active duty more difficult,” Mr Provest said.

    “NSW Police men and women give so much to our community and this program will ensure they get the help they need, including support to get back into the community and jobs, as well as physical fitness and counselling services.”

    Deputy Premier and Minister for Police Troy Grant said we can never underestimate how significant a burden the role of a police officer is and how it can affect their wellbeing.

    “Having spent most of my career as a serving officer, I know all too well that police are often expected to be the pillars of strength in situations when those around them are in their darkest hours,” Mr Grant said.

    NSW Police Legacy Chair, Acting Inspector Paul Bousfield said this is an important initiative recognising the committed service of former police officers as they begin another stage in their lives.

    “Many officers have invested so much of their life and identity in being a police officer and leaving can present a broad range of challenges for them and their families as they adjust to a civilian lifestyle,” Mr Bousfield said.

    “NSW Police Legacy’s entire ethos is our care for the police family.”

  • GRANTS AVAILABLE IN TWEED TO CELEBRATE NSW GRANDPARENTS DAY

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest today encouraged local organisations to celebrate the valuable contribution grandparents make in the Tweed community, by applying for $100,000 in funding available under the NSW Grandparents Day Community event grants program.

    The NSW Government has allocated $100,000 in funding for community groups, volunteer organisations and local councils to host events on NSW Grandparents Day Sunday 30 October 2016.

    “Grandparents play a significant role in the home and the community, and this extra funding is the NSW Government’s way of thanking them for their hard work,” Mr Provest said.

    “For the first time grants of up to $5,000 are available to support NSW Grandparents Day activities this year.

    “This is the perfect time to show our recognition and support for grandparents in Tweed for the amazing role they play in our lives.

    “I urge everyone in Tweed to celebrate them by organising an event in the community.”

    For the first time there are two funding categories available this year through the grants program, offering:

    • Tier 1 Grants of up to $1,000 for small-scale local community events or activities, and
    • Tier 2 Grants from $1,001 to $5,000 for large-scale region-wide events targeted at local government and larger community organisations.

    Applications for the NSW Grandparents Day Community event grants program are now open and close on Friday 12 August 2016.

    For more information, visit www.ageing.nsw.gov.au.

  • RURAL WORKPLACES IN TWEED TO BENEFIT FROM $2 MILLION QUAD BIKE SAFETY REBATE

    Member for Tweed Geoff Provest today announced that rural workplaces across the Tweed can apply for a rebate of up to $500 to implement safety measures aimed at reducing quad bike tragedies and injuries on farms.

    Mr Provest said the rebate was announced at the NSW Farmers Conference in Sydney as part of a push to encourage and support land managers to adopt a range of harm prevention strategies to protect their workers, family members and themselves.

    “Quad bikes are currently a leading cause of death on Australian properties with 220 deaths in the past 16 years and thousands more people seriously injured,” Mr Provest said.

    “Last year alone there were 22 quad bike fatalities and half of those deaths were workplace related so we have to act now to reduce that number.

    “The $2 million Quad Bike Safety Improvement Program is a step forward to protecting people who work on farms in our region.”

    The $500 rebate can go towards the purchase of compliant helmets, Operator Protector Devices including rollover bars, the purchase of a safer vehicle such as a side-by-side vehicle, and training courses tailored to farmers.

    It was announced during the NSW Farmers Conference where SafeWork NSW and Local Land Services launched an agreement to promote the safer use of quad bides in rural workplaces.

    Tocal College has also been awarded the contract to deliver 100 quad bike-training courses across NSW as part of the SafeWork NSW Quad Bike Safety Improvement Program.

    The rebate will be available until 30 June 2017. Further information is available at www.safework.nsw.gov.au.