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City of Perth report a wakeup call for local government: Minister18010Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml11/08/2020 6:15:44 AM2020-08-11T06:15:00Z Report paints a picture of poor leadership with rampant factionalism, dysfunction, poor governance and interference in administration Culture of self-interest, lack of accountability and transparency Decision to suspend council "undoubtedly justified" Important learnings for entire local government sectorThe final report of the Inquiry into the City of Perth was today tabled in State Parliament, outlining a litany of dysfunction, poor governance, factionalism, and fertile ground for greed, incompetence and mismanagement. The 2,000-page document contains over 250 findings and 350 recommendations, which have implications for the City and the broader local government sector. During its examination the Inquiry identified 135 matters that required referral to other organisations including WA Police, Australian Federal Police, and the Australian Taxation Office. Case studies and findings highlight councillors and candidates using sham leases to become eligible to stand for election; decisions on planning matters not based on planning considerations; lack of disclosure of financial interests by most councillors; excessive use of dining room by councillors for family and friends; councillors using their position to advance personal business interests; focus on specific events for the allocation of grants, sponsorships and tickets; and a range of issues with the City's administration - poor management, lack of financial management and planning, and procurement and contracting issues.The report has been referred to the City, which has 35 days to advise what it has done or proposes to do to give effect to the recommendations that apply to the City of Perth. The recommendations by the Inquirer Mr Tony Power that apply to the local government sector are broadly supported by the Government. These, together with the recommendations of the Local Government Act Review Panel released last week, will feed into the Local Government Act Review process. This process has been a key focus of reform by the Local Government Minister David Templeman over the past three and a half years. This reform process has already addressed a number of the issues that have been raised by the report, including mandatory training for elected members, a mandatory code of conduct for members and candidates, and the provision of clarity for elected members to manage real and perceived conflicts of interest related to gifts. Comments attributed to Local Government Minister David Templeman "This is an important document that has learnings for the whole sector. "It reveals the implications of what can happen when governance breaks down and members overreach their responsibilities and interfere in the administration. "Part of the response to this report will include amending legislation to put the relationship between elected members and the administration beyond doubt. "I urge everyone in local government to read this report and understand the implications for the sector. "It should be noted that the Inquirer stated that the decision to suspend the council was 'inevitably and undoubtedly justified', and that had it been an option available to him, he would have recommended that the Council be dismissed. "I would like to thank the Inquirer Mr Tony Power and his team for such a thorough, detailed and comprehensive examination of what occurred at the City of Perth during this period. "I look forward to a fresh start for the City with elections scheduled for October 17 and feel confident that the Commissioners have laid the foundations for good governance into the future." Minister's office - 6552 5400
Powerhouse partnership to improve childhood lung health18009Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml11/08/2020 5:31:10 AM2020-08-11T05:30:00Z Wal-yan Respiratory Research Centre to tackle chronic respiratory illness in children Focus on working towards healthy lungs for every child, for life Strategic partnership between Perth Children's Hospital Foundation, Telethon Kids Institute and Perth Children's Hospital $10 million fundraising commitment from Perth Children's Hospital Foundation and Telethon Kids InstituteWestern Australian children living with chronic respiratory illnesses are set to benefit from a new research centre launching today that brings together some of the brightest research minds and leading paediatric clinicians focused on ensuring all children have healthy lungs for life. The Wal-yan Respiratory Research Centre is the first of its kind at Perth Children's Hospital and reflects a cutting edge partnership between clinicians, scientists and the community to drive a new research agenda for childhood lung health. The Centre will work towards preventing - and hopefully one-day curing - respiratory illness in children, through building on the long-term reputation of WA's respiratory researchers who have been recognised as amongst the best in the world. The Centre's full name, Wal-yan Warlang-up, means 'Place of Healthy Lungs' in Noongar language. With around one million children living with serious respiratory diseases in Australia, including 110,000 in WA, respiratory illnesses are the leading cause of hospital admissions for children under four, accounting for 30 per cent of all childhood hospitalisations. A centrepiece of the world-class respiratory research centre is an ambitious project that could stop children developing asthma. Scientists and their teams at the Centre will work in partnership with clinicians to investigate key components of how different immune pathways interact in lung and airway tissue to induce asthma. The Centre's scientists are spearheading the development of therapies that would function like an asthma vaccine to both train the immune system and protect the lining of the airways to prevent the development of childhood asthma. The research centre will be supported through a fundraising commitment of $10 million over five years from Perth Children's Hospital Foundation and Telethon Kids Institute. The centre aims to work towards a world where all children have healthy lungs for life; improve the lives of children with breathing difficulties by finding ways to protect, repair and regenerate young lungs; reduce the significant Indigenous health gap in relation to respiratory disease; provide evidence-based respiratory health information to the community and advocate for issues relating to respiratory health in children and young people; attract and retain the world's best respiratory research clinicians and develop the next-generation of respiratory research luminaries; and drive the translation of research from laboratory, to the clinic and appointment. Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "I am proud to see our reputation as a world class leader in paediatric respiratory research strengthened with the opening of this Centre. "The Wal-yan Respiratory Research Centre is an outstanding example of collaboration between researchers and clinicians. "Respiratory illness affects so many kids, and with one-fifth of Aboriginal children living with acute respiratory illness and being 10 times more likely to die from their disease, a focus on respiratory research and improved outcomes is vital. "I am confident the Wal-yan Respiratory Research Centre will have profound benefits for future generations of WA children and their families." Comments attributed to Telethon Kids Institute Director Jonathan Carapetis "The Wal-yan Respiratory Research Centre enables our researchers to come together to think outside the box and dream bigger about that they can achieve. Working within a multidisciplinary research environment, they can drive pioneering discoveries out of the labs and into the community, across WA, Australia and beyond. "The Centre is unique in that it is focused on a life-long approach to respiratory health. Concentrating on improving the early diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of respiratory conditions, the Centre investigates childhood respiratory disease from the antenatal and postnatal risk factors, through to the health burden in infancy and childhood, and the chronic health issues that persist into adulthood." Comments attributed to Perth Children's Hospital Foundation Chief Executive Officer Carrick Robinson "The Perth Children's Hospital Foundation is proud to be part of a powerhouse partnership with Telethon Kids Institute and Perth Children's Hospital to deliver what is arguably one of the most important research centres in children's health today. "As a co-funder of the Wal-yan Respiratory Research Centre we are confident that such a significant focus on childhood respiratory disease will not only have a profound impact on WA sick kids now but will continue to benefit kids with respiratory disease worldwide for future generations to come." Minister's office - 6552 6500
Work underway on Perth’s new, modern freight corridor18008Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml11/08/2020 1:26:01 AM2020-08-11T01:25:00Z McGowan Government endorses independent Westport Taskforce final report and confirms Anketell and Thomas Road as future primary east-west freight route New modern freight corridor to run from Muchea to the South-West and connect to new Kwinana Port Delivering on election commitment to plan for a new port at Kwinana, with safer and more efficient freight transport links, as part of a long-term integrated solution $25 million allocated for planning, corridor design and community and land owner engagement along Anketell Road and Thomas Road Consultation, planning and design to begin immediately to support investment in road infrastructureWork is underway to finalise designs for an expanded Anketell Road in Perth's south and reserve the area for future infrastructure delivery. The McGowan Government yesterday released the independent Westport Taskforce Stage 2 Report which recommended a land-backed port be built within the Kwinana Industrial Area, connected by an efficient freight corridor via Anketell Road, Thomas Road and Tonkin Highway. The recommended container port at Kwinana includes upgrading Anketell Road into a freight route connecting the port directly to Tonkin Highway and the logistics precincts in outer the Perth metropolitan area. Some sections of Anketell Road already have a Planning Control Area in place, which protects the area as a freight corridor, while other parts of the road will need such plans put in place to ensure that future development considers the planned freight corridor. Early planning is also underway with regards to the future capacity and use of Thomas and Rowley roads. The McGowan Government has allocated $25 million, from the $97.2 million allocation, for planning, corridor design and community and land owner engagement along with potential land acquisition along Anketell Road and Thomas Road The Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage and Main Roads WA will now undertake environmental assessments and planning design to help inform new Planning Control Areas, which will ultimately result in amendments to the Metropolitan Region Scheme. This will be done progressively over the next four years. Consultation will be undertaken with all landowners in the area and the State Government will continue to work collaboratively with local governments to ensure development proposals along Anketell Road do not present road planning constraints. Comments attributed to Transport and Planning Minister Rita Saffioti "The release of the independent Westport Taskforce report is a blueprint for Western Australia's future prosperity. "It outlines the need for a new container port at Kwinana supported by an efficient, modern freight corridor via Anketell Road and Tonkin Highway stretching from Muchea to the South-West and connecting to the new port. "Rail upgrades under investigation include duplication of a 13km section of track between Kwinana and Cockburn and a marshalling yard at Kwinana. An upgraded rail network could support at least 1.7M TEU on rail and also provide efficiencies for bulk freight traffic servicing export berths and industrial facilities in Kwinana."With a port location now confirmed, we can commence detailed planning and design to formalise the transport corridors that will support this new freight infrastructure. "The State Government has planning instruments in place to protect parts of Anketell Road from contrary development and we want to ensure that the full route is secure, thereby facilitating future freight movement seamlessly from the port to Tonkin Highway. "I want to make it clear this is the very beginning of the process - we will continue to consult with the local community, connect with landowners and local governments, and undertake design and environmental assessments to ensure we build a modern freight corridor that meets the needs for Perth for generations to come." Minister's office - 6552 5500
A Shed redevelopment to transform Victoria Quay18007Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml11/08/2020 1:17:13 AM2020-08-11T01:15:00Z A Shed at Victoria Quay to be redeveloped by Gage Roads Brewing Company as a harbourside hospitality venue New venue to feature a working micro-brewery, restaurant, bar and harbourside alfresco area Part of the McGowan Government's broader vision for Victoria Quay as a major tourism and civic space Fremantle's Victoria Quay is set to be transformed into a tourism landmark, with a new micro-brewery, eatery and café set to open in the historic A Shed building next year. The McGowan Government has granted a lease to Western Australia brewing company Gage Roads Brewing Company to refurbish and develop the almost 100-year old building following a request-for-proposal process. The Gage Roads proposal will see the heritage-listed goods shed transformed into a working micro-brewery, eatery, alfresco area, bar and café. The facility will operate seven days a week as a family-friendly venue geared towards attracting a wide clientele of locals and tourists, including those visiting Victoria Quay by bike, on foot and via public transport. The 100m-long A Shed occupies a total land area of more than 3,000sqm, making it a significant development site. The micro-brewery, bar and eatery will take full advantage of the building's heritage features and A Berth frontage to the port. Refurbishment will be undertaken at Gage Roads' expense to plans approved by Fremantle Ports and in accordance with heritage obligations. Work will commence on the refurbishment of A Shed in October this year, with the new A Shed development set to open in Summer 2021-22 next year. The jarrah-framed and weatherboard A Shed was built in 1925-26, replacing an earlier goods shed on the site constructed in 1905. It has most recently been used by the WA Maritime Museum for office space and exhibits in storage. The new development comes as the McGowan Government releases the Victoria Quay Waterfront Steering Committee's assessment of future opportunities for Victoria Quay. The Steering Committee, chaired by Fremantle MLA Simone McGurk, met throughout last year to undertake a high-level opportunity assessment of the Victoria Quay precinct. The committee found that improving connectors to the Fremantle CBD, introducing effective catalysts for development and ongoing place activation measures were three key drivers for Victoria Quay's future development as a vibrant civic, commercial and tourism destination. It identified a number of potential opportunities for the future and the implementation of some of these will now be considered by the State Government. The assessment can be found at http//www.fremantleports.com.au Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "The redevelopment of A Shed delivers on our election commitment to bring high-value uses to the precinct and develop it as a world class tourist destination. "Right alongside the existing spectacular WA Maritime Museum, with an incredible harbour vista, this will become a highly-popular destination for both Western Australians and tourists. "In a challenging economic period, this is a major demonstration of confidence by a key player in the WA hospitality industry, that will generate jobs in both the construction and operational phases." Comments attributed to Ports Minister Alannah MacTiernan "Once complete, this Gage Roads facility will be a fantastic place to have a meal or drink, watch the theatre of the working port at the mouth of Swan River and absorb the history of this iconic Western Australian site. "A Shed is one of the most exciting tourism development opportunities in Western Australia and this project is a tremendous step toward delivering this part of Victoria Quay as a world-class civic hub in a port environment. "We are particularly excited that Gage Roads will use this new development to showcase beers and products from regional WA, helping to support our regional food and beverage businesses." Comments attributed to Fremantle MLA Simone McGurk "The site of Fremantle Harbour has a rich history, covering indigenous, economic, social and labour stories many of us know so well, and A Shed is a significant example of the wharf's unique industrial architecture. "This is a game-changer. Opening in summer 2021, this development will significantly increase foot traffic into the western end of Victoria Quay, and spur other development, as we progressively transform Victoria Quay into a world-class people place." Premier's office - 6552 5000Ports Minister's office - 6552 6200
$3 million in jetty funding to stimulate Geraldton tourism18006Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml11/08/2020 12:11:11 AM2020-08-11T00:00:00Z $3 million allocated towards construction of two new jetties to boost tourism along the Batavia Coast Targeted infrastructure to increase visits to the pristine Houtman Abrolhos Islands Jetties expected to generate annual visitor expenditure and support marine opportunities Investment part of the McGowan Government's $5.5 billion WA Recovery Plan The McGowan Government is boosting boating and tourism infrastructure in the regions, with an additional $3 million towards two new state-of-the-art, purpose-built tourism jetties at Geraldton. Part of the McGowan Government's $5.5 billion WA Recovery Plan, a jetty for vessels up to 25 metres will be built at the Batavia Coast Marina and a second, to accommodate larger vessels, will be located at Geraldton Port's eastern breakwater. The jetties will be dedicated tourism facilities specifically designed for easy loading and unloading of passengers, and will assist commercial operators as they work to increase visits to the pristine Houtman Abrolhos Islands National Park. The new jetties, expected to generate an additional $1.9 million in annual visitor expenditure by 2031, will also support other local marine-based tourism opportunities including fishing and diving charters, glass bottom boat tours, whale watching, aquaculture farm and maritime history tours. Detailed design of the jetties is progressing and construction will commence next year, supporting local jobs and providing opportunities for small businesses. A working group including representatives from the Mid West Development Commission, City of Greater Geraldton, Mid West Ports Authority, Department of Transport, WA Museum Geraldton and Geraldton Yacht Club championed the project and helped secure funding. Visit http//inthistogether.wa.gov.au for information about other projects. Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "This $3 million will help build two new purpose-built jetties, helping to boost tourism and boating opportunities in Geraldton and across the Batavia Coast. "We are committed to investing in coastal and boating infrastructure across the State to encourage more people onto the water. "This is part of our $5.5 billion WA Recovery Plan to help support local jobs and local businesses out of the COVID-19 pandemic." Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan "Our Government has been working to develop plans for these jetties over the last 12 months to support tourism in the region. "These new jetties are critical to the State's plans for tourism in the Mid-West and will help activate two key marine precincts on the iconic Geraldton coastline. "The jetties complement the recently released Mid West Ports master plan and the broader Batavia Coast Marina area, and are critical early investments in the planned transformation of these two key economic activity precincts." Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6200
Lotterywest COVID-19 Relief Fund to support Curtin students in need18001Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5400html10/08/2020 8:04:00 AM2020-08-10T08:00:00Z ​Curtin Student Guild receives $50,000 from COVID-19 Relief Fund to provide aid packages Guild has experienced significant increase in requests for support since onset of COVID-19The Curtin Student Guild has received funding of $50,000 from the McGowan Government's Lotterywest COVID-19 Relief Fund to provide support to students experiencing hardship as a result of the pandemic. The Guild is receiving up to 100 applications a week for crisis food aid packs from students in need. The majority are coming from international students who have been unable to return home, have lost their jobs and are not eligible for the JobKeeper program. The food aid packages are filled with staple items and other necessities to the value of $50 and are delivered to the students by volunteers. The McGowan Government, through Lotterywest, has committed $159 million to the COVID-19 Relief Fund to assist members of the Western Australian community significantly impacted by COVID-19. For more information about Lotterywest programs, visit https//www.lotterywest.wa.gov.au Comments attributed to Citizenship and Multicultural Interests Minister Paul Papalia "Since the onset of COVID-19, the Curtin Student Guild has seen an unprecedented rise in the number of students seeking assistance. "These requests for help are mainly related to international students in exceptional circumstances and the State Government is pleased to assist the Guild to provide this much-needed help. "WA's international students are an important part of our multicultural community and I applaud the work of the Curtin Student Guild in providing support at this challenging time." Minister's office - 6552 5600
PIVOT program to support small businesses in COVID-19 recovery18000Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements8210html10/08/2020 7:59:44 AM2020-08-10T07:55:00Z Free recovery program offered to WA small businesses to assist with impacts of COVID-19 PIVOT program will offer a range of online support mechanisms to promote business innovation Western Australia now has the most open economy and best small business environment in the country State Government's WA Recovery Plan delivering $5.5 billion in stimulus and support measures to assist State to emerge from COVID-19 A new program delivered as part of the WA Recovery Plan will assist small business owners to adapt and respond to the COVID-19 environment. The PIVOT program will help small business owners enhance their entrepreneurial mindset and develop innovative ways of operating their business. Western Australia's nation-leading response to COVID-19 means WA offers the best small business conditions in the country, with the PIVOT program to assist small businesses to succeed in the new environment. The program will be delivered online, with a range of practical webinars, mentoring and support initiatives to be offered as part of the program. Businesses with fewer than 20 staff, including sole traders, are able to apply to enter the program until August 17, 2020 via http//www.smallbusiness.wa.gov.au/pivot The program will be delivered by the Small Business Development Corporation (SBDC) and commences from August 31, 2020. Comments attributed to Small Business Minister Paul Papalia "WA's small businesses shouldered much of the burden of COVID-19 restrictions prior to the State's economy reopening, and all Western Australians appreciate those sacrifices. "With Western Australia now the most open economy in the country, with the most small business-friendly environment of any State, our focus has turned to assisting businesses to succeed in the new environment. "The PIVOT program will deliver key entrepreneurship and development skills to WA small businesses, to help them emerge from COVID-19 and plan for the future. "The Small Business Development Corporation has been a key support agency for WA businesses throughout the crisis with demand for their services surging. "The PIVOT program is a high value program that will help make our small businesses more resilient, adaptable, skilled and ready to respond to new opportunities as the State recovers from the impacts of COVID-19." Comments attributed to Small Business Commissioner David Eaton "The SBDC is proud to deliver the PIVOT program, which will offer practical webinars, mentoring and tools to help WA small businesses develop new ways of operating to successfully pivot operations following the impact of COVID-19. "We know that business owners have many demands on their operating revenue and may not be able to invest in developing key business skills to help their business adapt to disruption. "By offering this fully funded, high-quality program, the Government is making advanced business skills development available to eligible small businesses, including sole traders, to position them for recovery and growth. "Demand for the program is expected to be high and late applications cannot be accepted, so businesses are encouraged to apply immediately via the SBDC website." Minister's office - 6552 5600
McGowan Government welcomes new MP accountability measures17999Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements12360html10/08/2020 7:51:03 AM2020-08-10T07:50:00Z Salaries and Allowances Tribunal releases report into MP allowances and entitlements Review expanded following gross abuse of entitlements by former Liberal MLC New measures to be introduced to improve transparency and accountability The McGowan Government has welcomed today's release of a report by the Salaries and Allowances Tribunal (SAT) into Members of Parliaments' entitlements. In 2018, the SAT commenced a review of allowances and entitlements of Members of Parliament, following concerns from Premier Mark McGowan that some aspects were not operating effectively. This review was further broadened after the Corruption and Crime Commission uncovered serious abuse of entitlements by former Liberal MP Phil Edman. The SAT has proposed numerous measures to improve accountability, including new principles by which Members must abide, and a system to report Members' use of allowances. The McGowan Government accepts the review's findings, and the changes will come into effect following the next State election in March 2021. Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "We welcome today's report by the SAT and the accountability measures proposed. "My Government acknowledged back in 2018 that the Parliamentary travel allowance was not operating effectively, which paved the way for the SAT to commence its review into allowances and entitlements of Members of Parliament. "The review was expanded following the damning findings against Mr Edman. "Clearly stricter accountability measures need to be in place to prevent a repeat of the gross breaches by Mr Edman. "We accept the SAT's recommendations and look forward to implementing these changes to improve transparency and accountability, and to help regain the trust of the people of WA, following the Phil Edman scandal." Premier's office - 6552 5000
Visionary plan for future container port endorsed by Government17998Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements25520html10/08/2020 6:02:48 AM2020-08-10T06:00:00Z Independent Westport Taskforce recommends a future container port at Kwinana Delivering on election commitment to plan for a new port at Kwinana, with safer and more efficient freight transport links, as part of a long-term integrated solution Two options recommended to transition from Fremantle Inner Harbour, with any new port to remain publicly owned and operated Strong focus on Cockburn Sound environmental assessment $97.2 million to progress environmental works, detailed design and final business case The McGowan Labor Government has endorsed the independent Westport Taskforce's recommended location and design for a future container port at Kwinana, to meet Western Australia's long-term freight needs and remove container trucks from Perth's suburbs. The final report has recommended a land-backed port be built within the Kwinana Industrial Area, connected by an uninterrupted freight corridor via Anketell Road and Tonkin Highway. Work will now proceed to determine the timetable of transitioning freight from Fremantle Port to Kwinana. The transition will occur either in one step by 2032 or over a phased period that will see both ports share the freight task for around a further 15 years. Last year the Westport Taskforce found that even with billions of dollars' worth of road upgrades, the transport network supporting the Fremantle Inner Harbour would reach capacity by the mid-2030s. The Westport Taskforce has found that a Kwinana container port will need to be operational by around 2032, meaning planning for a future container port must get underway now. The recommendations of the Westport Taskforce are the result of the most rigorous investigation into WA's freight needs in the State's history, including two years of significant technical data collection, and extensive consultation and collaboration with industry, local government and the community. The recommended container port at Kwinana would include upgrading Anketell Road into a freight route that will connect the port directly to Tonkin Highway and the logistics precincts in the outer Perth metropolitan area. It will also be supported by an enhanced rail network and new intermodal terminals. These new road and rail links will help ease congestion by taking container trucks out of the suburbs and from the existing freight transport routes, helping to improve road safety and efficiency. The final recommendations were based on the outcome of two detailed multi-criteria analyses (MCAs) a rapid cost-benefit analysis and a strategic risk analysis. Priorities such as the marine and terrestrial environment, commercial and economic costs and benefits, social impacts, heritage and land use were heavily weighted by the Westport Taskforce. The McGowan Government has allocated $97.2 million to progress on the recommended options, to be managed by a new Westport Office established in the Department of Transport. That work will prioritise assessing and mitigating environmental impacts; protecting land for future port and supply chain connections; detailed port, road and rail design; and developing a business case for consideration by Infrastructure Australia. The Westport Taskforce's final report is available at https//www.mysaytransport.wa.gov.au/westport Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "I want to thank the Westport Taskforce for its detailed, independent work to develop the long-term solution for Perth's future freight needs - work that will now continue within the State Government as we move to the next phase for Westport. "It is imperative that we plan for Perth's long-term future, beyond the capacity limits of Fremantle Port and its road and rail links. "Fremantle Port has served our State for the last one hundred years, it's now time to plan and build the next big piece of economic infrastructure that sets our State up for the next century. "This is a once-in-a-lifetime project, it's time to get on with it and unlock WA's future." Comments attributed to Ports Minister Alannah MacTiernan "Kwinana has been recognised as the logical location for a new container port for decades, with its existing industrial strip and room for expansion and development. "We must now move ahead over the next four years and build the case for investment detailed environmental assessments, detailed port and supply chain design, thorough costings and ongoing engagement with industry and the community. "Western Australia's new port will be a 21st century facility, embracing the latest in port design to create the capability to take the world's largest ships, and new technology to increase efficiency and reduce environmental impacts." Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "We are continuing to deliver on the commitments we made at the 2017 election. "We have reached our target of 20 per cent of freight onto rail, a record number, that translates to 110,000 trucks off our roads each year. "We are getting on with the job of planning and delivering an uninterrupted, modern freight corridor via Anketell Road and Tonkin Highway that will stretch from Muchea to the South-West and connect to the new port. "We already have over $1 billion committed to continual upgrades to Tonkin Highway, through Bayswater and Welshpool, as well as the planning underway for the extension to Mundijong. "The Westport plan is a plan for WA's future economic prosperity." Comments attributed to Westport chairperson Nicole Lockwood "The Westport Taskforce's recommendations were reached after more than two years of work including a review of past planning, significant technical data collection and extensive consultation and collaboration with industry, the community and all tiers of government. "Westport's work to date has been very detailed, thorough and rigorous - and that will continue as we start to work with industry and the community to develop the case for investment over the next four years. "After more than two years of intensive analysis, we know the Kwinana Industrial Area makes sense as the location for Perth's future port and will accommodate rail and road links to move heavy container traffic around the city away from the suburbs. "Westport's job now is to work very closely with industry, interest groups and affected landowners to achieve the best possible outcomes in relation to land use, the environment in and around Cockburn Sound, job-creation and economic growth, and outcomes for Aboriginal people and the general community." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Ports Minister's office - 6552 6200 Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500
Combat sports process streamlined with launch of online portal17997Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6150html10/08/2020 2:12:10 AM2020-08-10T02:05:00Z ​New online portal makes combat sports registrations easier Industry can collect all their details in one placeParticipants in Western Australia's combat sports industry can now collect and view all their details in one place while maintaining the highest privacy and security protections, thanks to a new portal developed by the Combat Sports Commission. The Combat Sports Commission, the peak body regulating boxing, mixed martial arts, kickboxing and muay thai competitors and competitions in WA, has launched a platform which allows participants to register and view their details through to seeing their latest serology (blood) reports. Promoters will also be able to use the portal to apply for promotions permits and create contest cards. In addition to streamlining the registration process, the online portal offers several benefits. Contestants and industry participants will be able to view and update personal details; view current registration details; track the progress of applications; view expiry dates for serology reports and certificate of fitness forms; upload documents containing prescribed medical information (serology reports and certificate of fitness); and view contest (fight) records.The first phase of the roll out of the new system will invite industry participants and contestants to register while phase two will expand to include applications for promotion permits. Having all the information in one place will streamline the review and approval process around registrations, permit applications and contest cards. Current registrants will receive an email to ask them to register through the portal. To access the portal, go to https//www.dlgsc.wa.gov.au/sport-and-recreation/combat-sports-commission Comments attributed to Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray "This is a positive innovation from the Combat Sports Commission which puts all information in one space and allows much easier access to information for participants and the commission. "From a process perspective, commission staff will be able to approve registrations, permit applications and contest cards with all the information in one place. "This also supports commission staff in their work around aspects like the health and safety of the industry and their ongoing work in education around issues like weight cutting." Minister's office - 6552 6400
Major milestone at Peel Business Park as lots ready to welcome new businesses17996Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements7650html10/08/2020 2:03:10 AM2020-08-10T02:00:00Z First lots completed at Peel Business Park in Nambeelup Flagship Industrial Lands Authority estate delivering 160 long term jobs and economic development to the Peel region Project is a centrepiece of the Transform Peel initiative, with potential to inject $1 billion a year into WA's economy by 2050 The Peel Business Park in Nambeelup has reached its first major milestone with Stage 1 of the innovative industrial development now complete. Stage 1 construction included bulk earthworks, civil works, trunk power infrastructure and the completion of the first 10 lots in the business park. Eight of these 10 lots have been sold to a range of local organisations and businesses including Westurn Engineering, Mandurah Glass, Bells Engines, the Shire of Murray's Agri-Innovation Precinct and the Department of Fire and Emergency Services' Bushfire Centre of Excellence. These organisations and businesses are expected to create more than 160 long-term jobs for the region. With the first lots now finished, contracts have been recently issued to Total Eden for landscaping and to Peel-based contractor Wormall Civil for offsite water and sewer extensions. Wormall Civil are also completing significant upgrades to Lakes and Gull Roads, which service Stage 1 of the business park, and work is expected to be completed by October 2020. DevelopmentWA's Industrial Land's Authority is developing the first stage of the Park as an Innovation through Demonstration project. The estate includes sustainable approaches to material re-use in the landscaping works and responsible environmental management. For further information, visit http//www.developmentwa.com.au/peelbusinesspark Comments attributed to Lands Minister Ben Wyatt "The Peel Business Park is a fantastic development that has, and will continue to, drive economic growth and support jobs in the region. "Stage 1 has supported more than 300 jobs during construction and with the first of the businesses and organisations moving into this innovative industrial precinct a further 160 long-term local jobs are expected to be created. "The $49 million Transform Peel initiative aims to drive economic growth in the Peel Region to create more than 33,000 jobs across a diverse range of industries and inject up to $1 billion a year into the WA economy by 2050." Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan "The Peel region has a lot to offer industry, and the solid uptake of lots of Peel Business Park is testament to the region's strengths. "Developing the Peel Business Park has not only created local jobs in construction, but is supporting long-term employment and economic diversification in the Peel." Comments attributed to Murray-Wellington MLA Robyn Clarke "Peel Business Park is set to show off just what the Peel area has to offer for businesses interested in innovating or expanding. "Peel Business Park has created a hive of energy with locals excited and interested in local employment creation. "This will be a future jobs hub of the region, of innovation and technology, and we are very excited to see the next stage completed." Lands Minister's office - 6552 5900 Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6200
New trial to help address number of Aboriginal children in care17995Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements10410html10/08/2020 12:17:03 AM2020-08-09T23:05:00Z $715,000 to trial Aboriginal Family Led Decision Making in Western Australia Pilot part of a larger effort to address overrepresentation of Aboriginal children in out-of-home careThe McGowan Government is investing $715,000 in an Aboriginal Family Led Decision Making (AFLDM) pilot to support improved collaboration with families at risk of child protection intervention. The trial will promote greater self-determination and participation for Aboriginal people to address the overrepresentation of Aboriginal children in out-of-home care and child protection systems. The two-year pilot will be led and co-designed by Aboriginal people in Western Australia. AFLDM is a model that creates a culturally safe space for family and extended family to provide input into decisions regarding their children, and for these decisions to be made in a culturally appropriate way. The trial will work to make safe choices for children that are supported and led by their families, focusing on three cohorts in several metropolitan and/or regional areas The trial will initially focus on preventing infants from coming into care by keeping them safe with their parents and families. Other cohorts that may be part of the trial include children on protection orders (time limited) where the Department of Communities is working towards reunification and strengthening cultural support planning, and children whose families are working with the department's intensive family support teams to prevent them from entering care. The trial will expand on changes in the Children and Community Services Amendment Bill 2019, which is currently before parliament, to strengthen Aboriginal participation and consultation, and cultural support planning within the child protection system. The Bill implements recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and the 2017 Statutory Review of the Children and Community Services Act 2004. The trial will also look at training and workforce capability in WA to support ongoing implementation of AFLDM. It will be delivered in partnership with Aboriginal people and Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations (ACCOs). This work will complement the Aboriginal In-Home Support Service and other prevention and early intervention support services being implemented in WA. Comments attributed to Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk "This important pilot project is the next step in strengthening our child protection system through increased Aboriginal involvement in child protection matters. "It builds on our work to build Aboriginal ownership of outcomes for children who have contact with the child protection system and strengthen ACCOs' involvement in support services. "When Aboriginal families are supported to draw on the strengths and supports of their family and community, they are best placed to make decisions that are in a child's best interests. "This trial will be informed by the experiences of other States and Territories that have implemented Aboriginal Family Led Decision Making, such as Queensland, Victoria and Tasmania. "The McGowan Government is committed to working with Aboriginal people to develop a model for implementing family-led decision making that is appropriate for our State." Minister's office - 6552 6600
Agreement to streamline environmental approvals given green light17994Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements20270html10/08/2020 12:11:11 AM2020-08-09T23:00:00Z Green light for long-awaited reforms to cut unnecessary delays Important measure to reduce red tape and assist with economic recovery Maintaining environmental protection standards key to new agreement State Government welcomes removal of duplication and single point for approvals Approvals timeframes to be reduced by an average of six months The McGowan Government has welcomed moves by the Commonwealth Government to enter into a bilateral agreement with Western Australia to streamline environmental approvals. The Commonwealth Government today confirmed its intention to enter into a landmark agreement that will provide a single avenue for industry to achieve Commonwealth and State environmental assessments and approvals. It is expected the agreement will result in an average six-month reduction in decision-making timeframes. WA has about $100 billion worth of development proposals in the pipeline that will benefit from a bilateral approval agreement. The McGowan Government has long recognised the importance of ensuring timely and robust environmental assessments to deliver greater certainty and agility to Western Australian industry. The McGowan Government has been strongly advocating for the benefits of removing duplication between State and Federal requirements while maintaining environmental standards. This approach is supported by the interim review of the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, released last month by Professor Graeme Samuel. WA's environmental impact assessment practices of the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) are highly acclaimed. In 2019 the EPA was honoured with an International Association for Impact Assessment award. More recently, the Fraser Institute's Annual Survey of Mining Companies identified WA as the number one place in the world for mining and mineral exploration. This is why WA is ideally placed to work with the Commonwealth and lead the nation to deliver this once-in-a-generation reform. It is also important to note that the Commonwealth retains the ability to 'call in' projects when it deems it necessary. The McGowan Government remains focused on simplifying and reducing unnecessary regulatory obligations on industry while maintaining strong environmental protection standards to further aid the State's economic recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic. The bilateral approval agreement will complement the State Government's work with the Commonwealth on Environment Online and with the Biodiversity Information Office. Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "I welcome the Commonwealth's indication that it intends to enter into this agreement with WA, to help streamline approvals and fast-track jobs. "Western Australia has long understood that delivering strong and sustainable economic growth means reducing unnecessary regulatory burden on industry while upholding robust environmental protection standards. "This will not in any way compromise environmental standards. It will simply reduce duplication in the approvals process. "Our Government's main priority is ensuring Western Australia is in a strong positon to recover from the pandemic, with employment opportunities created for Western Australians. "This agreement will pave the way for important job-creating projects, while maintaining the highest environmental standards." Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "This bilateral agreement between the State and Commonwealth Governments is a long awaited step to kick-start the economy and streamline the environmental approvals process. "It's also significant because consistent and timely environmental decision making benefits the community in Western Australia and is a win for the environment. "In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has never been a more important time to facilitate economic activity, while safeguarding the environment for future generations. "The State's pipeline of development proposals will benefit from the faster, clearer and more consistent environmental assessments and approvals that we can achieve with a bilateral approval agreement." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800
Recreational fishing hooks new benefits from WA Recovery Plan17993Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements15520html9/08/2020 5:23:35 AM2020-08-09T05:00:00Z $6 million to build new artificial reefs, boost fish stocking and support regional fishing tourism Initiatives will deliver around 40 new jobs and help support 1,320 existing jobs Recreational fishing will boost WA's COVID-19 recovery The McGowan Government has unveiled a $6 million package to support Western Australia's booming recreational fishing industry as part of the WA Recovery Plan. The package, developed with Recfishwest, includes new artificial reefs, a boost to finfish stocks to increase fishing opportunities in the metropolitan area, and a new State-wide marketing campaign to drive more locals and tourists to WA's iconic fishing locations. As part of the package, a special shallow water reef will be installed off Albany and additional state-of-the-art structures will be deployed to create safe fishing meccas off two other regional towns. The plan will deliver a significant boost to fish stocks in Perth metropolitan waters. The stocking of finfish species, such as yellowtail kingfish, will support new fishing opportunities on new North Metro Reef to create a drawcard for tourism and support the 50 fishing tour vessels operating off the Perth coast. The Cockburn Sound 'Snapper Guardians' program will also be extended, and an additional one million barramundi will be released annually into Lake Kununurra. In continuing to support and enhance the still water barramundi fishery in the East Kimberley, there is an opportunity for indigenous economic development through direct employment in fishing tours. The McGowan Government is also working with Recfishwest, WA's peak recreational fishing body, to develop a State-wide marketing campaign for iconic WA fishing experiences, destinations and businesses to help create new jobs and strengthen the recovery. New promotions to feature in the marketing campaign will include the development of a WA Fishing Trails and Calendar to not only promote salmon in the south but also showcase barramundi in the north. WA has led the nation in easing restrictions, opening up local economies faster and getting Western Australians back to work and out to enjoy themselves in a COVID-safe way. Recreational fishing - which contributes an estimated $2.4 billion to the State's economy each year - complements regional tourism in WA. The annual salmon run alone is worth more than $331 million to regional areas, particularly in the South-West and Great Southern. Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "Recreational fishing is worth an estimated $2.4 billion annually to WA and has an impressive history of supporting regional economies through tourism. "Recreational fishers support communities and towns across WA as they travel to their favourite fishing spots. "The $6 million package includes funding to install more artificial reefs in regional locations, which will help sustain existing jobs, create new employment opportunities and provide ongoing tourism assets that can be factored into tourism promotions. "The WA Recovery Plan recognises the importance of both social and economic recovery across WA, and recreational fishing is a strong element in our social fabric. "By developing these new fishing opportunities we aim to encourage Western Australians to holiday within the State and produce wider community benefits under WA's Recovery Plan." Comments attributed to Fisheries Minister Peter Tinley "This package will support the local fishing community and help draw tourists to our iconic fishing locations. "Western Australians love their fishing and we are lucky through our management of COVID-19 that our fishers are getting out and about again. "These initiatives will further enhance recreational fishing experiences to support the recreational fishers, which generates jobs and recovery for Western Australia. "The McGowan Government is also supporting recreational fishing with new stock enhancement plans and fishing opportunities. "In dropping a line, setting a pot, collecting an abalone or scooping a crab, it's the enjoyment of the catch that inspires recfishers and gets them out and about around the State." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Fisheries Minister's office - 6552 5300
Plan for Peel region unveiled as part of WA Recovery Plan17992Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements14020html8/08/2020 3:54:33 AM2020-08-08T03:05:00Z Premier Mark McGowan releases Peel Recovery Plan Part of $5.5 billion WA Recovery Plan to guide WA through COVID-19 recovery Plan will create a pipeline of jobs in the region and support the local economy Unprecedented investment in local infrastructure, schools and TAFE, community facilities Support for tourism, local manufacturing, and renewable and new technologies The McGowan Government has unveiled a multimillion dollar package for the Peel region as part of the WA Recovery Plan, to drive economic and social recovery and create a pipeline of local jobs. The Peel Recovery Plan is focused on getting locals back to work and includes a significant investment in sectors including construction, manufacturing, tourism and hospitality, renewable energy, education and training, and agriculture. It will deliver a pipeline of short and long term jobs supporting and strengthening our existing industries, as well as laying the foundation for jobs of the future. As part of the McGowan Government's $229 million TAFE package, the plan includes upgrades to TAFE infrastructure in the region, including $9.17 million to South Metropolitan TAFE's Mandurah campus for a new Hospitality and Tourism Training Centre to deliver training for a range of courses including commercial cookery, tourism and events management; $25 million for free TAFE short courses to upskill thousands of Western Australians, with a variety of free courses available at South Metropolitan TAFE's Mandurah campus; $32 million to expand the Lower fees, local skills program and significantly reduce TAFE fees across 39 high priority courses; and $4.8 million for the Apprenticeship and Traineeship Re-engagement Incentive that provides employers with a one-off payment of $6,000 for hiring an apprentice and $3,000 for hiring a trainee, whose training contract was terminated on, or after, March 1, 2020 due to the economic downturn. It also includes $10.38 million for the Pinjarra Senior High School for a new permanent performing arts centre and sports hall, as part of the Major School Upgrade package. The Peel Recovery Plan includes investment in infrastructure and industry to create opportunities for local businesses and jobs for local workers. The McGowan Government's revamped Buy Local policy will ensure local businesses are in the box seat to carry out this work. The plan includes $8.65 million to invest in upgraded infrastructure, including roads and drainage in East Keralup to attract private industry and create local jobs; $2 million for upgrades at Mandurah Police Station; $116 million across the State for the Regional Land Booster package that will make residential, commercial and industrial lots more affordable including residential lots at Mandurah Junction and Ranford, and industrial lots in Pinjarra; installing solar panels at up to 60 bus and train stations across WA, including at Mandurah train station; $210,000 for upgrades at Waroona Volunteer Fire and Emergency Services; and $8 million to the Offsets Fund for Recovery program that creates green jobs by supporting conservation groups to carry out on-ground works such as fencing, seeding and planting across regional WA, including the Peel region. The plan also includes a significant investment in infrastructure and programs to drive tourism and create jobs. It includes $1.19 million for upgrades on the Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi Trail including renewing camp sites, bridges and sections of the track; $750,000 to replace the ageing timber boardwalk in Goegrup Lake Nature Reserve in the Mandurah region; $350,000 for upgrades to buildings, new facilities and services across national parks in the Peel region, including Serpentine National Park; and $25 million for the Healthy Estuaries WA program for improvement works in estuaries across regional WA, including in the Peel-Harvey system. Strengthening Western Australia's health and community services is a vital component of the WA Recovery Plan. It includes $4 million towards the expansion of family and domestic violence refuges, including the construction of an additional six units at the Peel therapeutic refuge. The Peel region will also benefit from a range of State-wide programs included in the WA Recovery Plan. The full list of projects can be viewed at https//inthistogether.wa.gov.au Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "I thank each and every member of the Peel community for their efforts and sacrifices during the pandemic. "We must remain vigilant, but our work to reduce the spread of COVID-19 means we are in a strong position to continue the process of recovery. "The Peel Recovery Plan will drive economic and social recovery in the region to ensure it can recover stronger than ever. "It will create a pipeline of short and long term jobs for locals and deliver huge improvements to local infrastructure and services." Comments attributed to Mandurah MLA David Templeman "This plan is an important step in the Peel's recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. "The McGowan Government is continuing its record of strong investment in the region, and this plan will deliver important upgrades to Mandurah TAFE, tourism infrastructure, improvement works to the Peel-Harvey estuary, roads and other job-creating projects." Comments attributed to Murray-Wellington MLA Robyn Clarke "This is a significant investment into the Peel region from the McGowan Government. "The plan will create new training opportunities in the region, deliver significant improvements to local infrastructure and create long-term jobs for locals. "The Peel Recovery Plan will put the Peel region in a strong position to recover from the pandemic, and I know our community is very grateful and looking forward to positive outcomes." Premier's office - 6552 5000
WA Recovery Plan injects $150 million into State’s tourism industry17991Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements20410html8/08/2020 3:19:16 AM2020-08-08T03:00:00Z Package to support and enhance tourism as WA manages COVID-19 impacts WA's natural tourism icons such as Kings Park, Margaret River, Karijini, Monkey Mia, the Pinnacles, Rottnest Island and Ningaloo all set to benefit Investment in wide-ranging infrastructure upgrades, affordable regional airfares and Aboriginal cultural tourism to support a pipeline of jobs across the State Initiatives will help grow WA's strong intrastate market and ensure industry is better placed than ever for return of out-of-State tourists McGowan Government's Wander Out Yonder campaign and recent affordable airfare partnerships delivering benefits for local industry The McGowan Government has made an $150 million tourism package investment to support Western Australia's tourism sector as it responds to the impacts of COVID-19, as part of the WA Recovery Plan. Many of the State's natural icons are set to undergo major improvements, which will create a pipeline of jobs, help get people back into work, and people out visiting the WA attractions and supporting local businesses. Western Australia's most iconic natural attractions and tourism drawcards - including Kings Park, Margaret River, Karijini National Park, Monkey Mia, the Pinnacles, Rottnest Island and Ningaloo - are among many destinations to benefit from the $150 million package. Key tourism attractions across the State will be enhanced - with construction to begin on new visitor facilities, camp sites, trails, jetties, boardwalks, and other amenities and infrastructure. The comprehensive program also includes affordable airfare packages, enhancements for Aboriginal cultural tourism, road improvements for better access to destinations, and support to bring unique and innovative attractions to WA. Premier Mark McGowan, Tourism Minister Paul Papalia and Environment Minister Stephen Dawson launched the wide-ranging program today in Mandurah. The tourism recovery package will create jobs in a wide range of industries, with capital works programs to begin right around the State with regional WA, in particular, to see significant benefits from the program. The improvements will ensure the local industry is better placed than ever to capitalise on the future return of out-of-State tourists - while continuing to build on the strong intrastate market of locals now travelling in WA instead of overseas or interstate. Western Australians have responded positively to the McGowan Government's Wander Out Yonder campaign, with destinations around the State reporting strong numbers since regional border restrictions were relaxed. The $150 million investment will see scores of tourism-focused projects and initiatives getting underway, including a new $10 million café and function centre at Perth Zoo and more than $1 million of improvements at Kings Park. In the Peel region, visitors and residents will be able to benefit from $950,000 worth of infrastructure works including upgrades to the timber boardwalks and paths, and visitor facilities in national parks across the Peel hills and coastal region including buildings, trails, camp sites and roads. The Bibbulmun Track and Munda Biddi Trail, which runs through the Peel, will also benefit from a $1.19 million upgrade which includes the renewing of camp sites, bridges and sections of the track. These investments complement the $25 million for the Healthy Estuaries WA program for improvement works in estuaries across regional WA, including the Peel Harvey system - announced as part of the Green Jobs Plan component of the WA Recovery Plan. Aboriginal cultural tourism experiences will be boosted with the $3.84 million development of three 'Camping with Custodians' sites at Dampier Peninsula near Broome, while a $10 million access road will open up the Pilbara's Murujuga National Park and support the development of the Living Knowledge Centre. Rottnest Island's ageing water supply and road network will be overhauled with a $31 million investment to meet sustained visitor growth and increased business activity since 2017. Millions will be spent developing trails and 'trails towns' around the State to service existing and new trails to attract more visitors to national parks. In addition to walking trails there is $20 million for bike trails in Kalamunda and Mundaring in the Perth Hills, and regional WA including Albany, Denmark, Mount Barker, Plantagenet, Pemberton and Margaret River. The investment includes $9 million towards regional air travel - consisting of the $6 million Regional Aviation Recovery package to support airlines' partnerships to tourism destinations, and the $3 million regional aviation support package to ensure minimum services. A $1 million investment in the Tourism Attractions Case Management framework will help attract unique and innovative attractions to the State. For more information on tourism package projects, visit https//www.wa.gov.au Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "This major investment will assist the State's tourism industry as it manages the impacts of COVID-19, enhancing Western Australia's greatest assets - our world-class natural attractions. "These wide-ranging improvements will enhance the intrastate holiday experience for locals, while ensuring the State is better placed than ever to capitalise on the out-of-State market when the time comes. "Western Australians are among the best travellers in the world and COVID-19 has not dimmed our enthusiasm for getting out and exploring new places and incredible locations, with this investment to boost the visitor experience while creating a pipeline of jobs in many industries all around the State." Comments attributed to Tourism Minister Paul Papalia "Western Australia's greatest strength as a tourism destination is our pristine natural assets - we truly have the most exotic, diverse and remarkable environment in the world. "This raft of important projects all across the State will enhance the visitor experience at many of our most unique destinations, ensuring our stunning landscapes and natural offerings are properly supported by quality visitor facilities and infrastructure. "We are home to the oldest living culture on earth, and the investment in Aboriginal cultural tourism will allow even more tourists to learn about the State's incredible history while having an unforgettable holiday experience." Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "If we could take one positive from the COVID pandemic it would be the surge in collective appreciation for what's in our own backyard; throughout Western Australia, people have been rediscovering a passion for our natural environment. "Enhancing the State's tourism icons is important, because if we can help people connect with nature, that's not just good news for them - it's great news for our environment. Giving people opportunities to appreciate and learn about the natural world is at the heart of creating an environmentally-aware Western Australian community. "This aspect of the Recovery Plan to boost tourism infrastructure will help ensure WA's economic recovery supports the continued protection of Western Australia's spectacular environment - one of our most precious assets. "When planning your next holiday, make sure you explore nature's offerings in our own backyard. If COVID has taught us anything it's that we need to appreciate what we have in our own State, celebrate it and make sure we look after it for generations to come." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Tourism Minister's office - 6552 5600 Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800
Carers to receive one-off payments to ease household pressures17990Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements14450html8/08/2020 2:39:10 AM2020-08-08T02:30:00Z McGowan Government delivers almost $3.7 million in one-off COVID-19 support payments to foster carers as part of the WA Recovery Plan Foster and family carers, special guardian carers and grandcarers to receive $500 for the first child in their care, and $250 for each additional child in the household Payments to benefit an estimated 7,359 children living in carer households More than $300,000 to assist children and carers with additional access to therapeutic and consultation support Thousands of foster and family carers will receive one-off payments of $500 or more from the McGowan Government to help ease household financial pressures experienced through the COVID-19 pandemic. An estimated 7,359 children living in carer households are expected to benefit from the financial boost, which will be provided directly to foster and family carers, community sector organisation foster carers, special guardian carers and grandcarers in September. Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk today announced the $3.68 million in payments to assist carers with buying essential items and covering additional expenses to ensure children remain safe, healthy and connected to school. Carers will receive one-off payments of $500 for the first child in their care, and $250 for each additional child in their household. The financial boost for carers is part of the McGowan Government's $2.3 billion COVID-19 stimulus and relief package for households and businesses. As part of the WA Recovery Plan, the State Government will also provide more than $300,000 for additional therapeutic and consultation support for foster and family carers. The service will provide up to eight consultation and support sessions for carers, to assist with out-of-home care support and provide strategies to aid stabilisation for children and families once a placement commences. The State Government is also in the process of finalising a report on its Foster Care Refresh project, which has involved consultations across Western Australia to ensure the Department of Communities and foster carers are working together to deliver the best possible outcomes for children in care. The report contains recommendations aimed at addressing gaps in the system and improving outcomes for foster families and children in care. The Minister said the funding would reduce the financial strain on carer households at a time of need and offer greater support to carers seeking to create stable placements for the children they look after. Comments attributed to Child Protection Minister Simone McGurk "Foster carers, grandcarers and special guardian carers do incredible work day in and day out, and we know that work became more challenging at the height of the pandemic. "These carers stepped up when the vulnerable children in their care were kept home from school to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and asking questions about why they were being made to stay at home. "While the financial impact of COVID-19 has been significant for many Western Australians, this payment will go some way to helping carers out and acknowledging their often unsung work. "It will also help to reduce the strain on these households at a time of need, offering greater support to carers seeking to create stable placements for the children they look after. "Providing family and foster carers with the right support, at the right time and for the right reasons, will bring about the best outcomes for children in care." Minister's office - 6552 6600
Record infrastructure upgrades to support Rottnest Island’s growth17989Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements11060html8/08/2020 2:27:49 AM2020-08-07T23:00:00Z $31 million investment to overhaul Rottnest's ageing water supply and road network McGowan Government has now invested a record $47.2 million in infrastructure works alone on Rottnest Island since 2017 Visitation numbers had reached record highs prior to COVID-19, with 785,000 visitors to the Island in 2019 Investment part of WA Recovery Plan, to provide immediate job-creating work and strengthen tourism sector for the future Over $30 million will be spent upgrading Rottnest Island's ageing water supply and road network to shore up the holiday hotspot's infrastructure and plan for future growth. Tourism to the Island has increased significantly in recent years, with visitation up 21 per cent from 2017 to 2019 thanks to the McGowan Government's increased efforts to sell the destination. This work included leveraging the 'quokka selfie' around the world, approving long-delayed accommodation projects and overseeing the opening of 17 new small businesses on the Island. The Island's first glamping offering, Discovery Rottnest Island, opened last year and new luxury resort, Samphire Rottnest, opens in October, with the high-end redevelopment of The Lodge set to begin in coming years. The major water improvements will overhaul the Island's drinking water network and wastewater system, which are under increased pressure from sustained visitor growth and increased business activity. This includes replacing the ageing pipework, upgrading pump stations and overhauling the desalination plant to shore up both drinking water supply and firefighting capacity. The project begins later this year and will be completed by 2024. The road upgrades will begin later this month and will see more than 10km of the Island's roads resurfaced with over 47,000sqm of dense graded asphalt. This will improve the road surface for the bus service, as well as improving cyclist and pedestrian amenity and increasing the life-span of the road network. The State Government, through the Department of Transport's Regional Airports Development Scheme, has also allocated over $15,000 for the purchase and installation of an Aerodrome Weather Information Broadcast system, which will provide pilots in the area with real-time weather information, helping improve safety at the airstrip. The $31 million investment is in addition to the State Government's $16.2 million funding over four years for maritime infrastructure upgrades at Rottnest Island, including reconstruction of the fuel jetty. This brings the State Government's infrastructure investment up to $47.2 million in the last three years, on top of recurrent capital funding. Comments attributed to Tourism Minister Paul Papalia "These projects represent the biggest infrastructure investment Rottnest Island has ever seen. "We have worked hard over the last three years to elevate Rottnest to the status of a true tourism icon for Western Australia, with the quokka selfie among our efforts to market the Island paradise to the world. "Attracting record visitor numbers is great for the State's tourism industry, but it has put pressure on the Island's water supply. "This investment will allow us to plan for future tourism growth and business activity. We are firmly focused on increasing accommodation, hospitality, experience and tour options on the Island, while preserving its natural wonders. "With this latest initiative, the McGowan Government has now invested almost $50 million towards Rottnest Island in major infrastructure projects alone." Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "This investment in the island's roads will ensure safer, easier access for residents as well as improving the visitor experience for the 700,000-plus tourists visiting the Island each year. "There may be some disruption for visitors while works are ongoing - however long term they will help improve the amenity of the Island. "The installation of the Aerodrome's new weather broadcast system is so important for aircraft using the airstrip, improving aircraft safety, particularly between dusk and dawn. "Currently pilots have to call up on their mobiles to get the latest weather but this new system means pilots can automatically be updated on weather conditions via radio, while they are in the air." Tourism Minister's office - 6552 5600 Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500
Review into mental health services for children and adolescents17988Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements13520html8/08/2020 2:14:42 AM2020-08-07T22:00:00Z Review to focus on how to improve mental health services for young people Independent review to be delivered by the Chief Psychiatrist Mental Health Minister Roger Cook has asked the Chief Psychiatrist to undertake a targeted, independent review into how the public mental health system cared for 13-year-old Kate Savage, who recently passed away. The review will focus on the clinical care, and comment on how to improve mental health services for young people across inpatient and community-based clinical services. The findings of the review will form part of the broader Young People Priority Framework, already underway by the Mental Health Commission, which will analyse and make recommendations for young people, aged 12 to 24, across both the public health system and non-government services. The framework will be produced by the end of the year and will provide an overview of current services, identify gaps and make recommendations for key actions. It will be developed in close partnership with the sector and stakeholders, and overseen by the Mental Health Executive Committee and the Community Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drug Council. Recently, the McGowan Government announced a new $25 million youth homelessness service for young people with mental health and/or alcohol and other drug issues, along with an expansion of support services for children bereaved by suicide. If you need help for yourself or your child, you can see your family GP, a family counselling service, call the Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800. In a life-threatening situation, call 000 or visit your nearest emergency department. Comments attributed to Mental Health Minister Roger Cook "We know there is more to do to better support young people in Western Australia - and this recent case has highlighted that the current system does not cater for all. "It's important we support our young people to address mental health issues early, before they become worse. "In Our Priorities, the McGowan Government identified mental health services for young people as a priority area. "The Young People Priority Framework will guide the sector in how to better support and respond to the needs of young people aged 12 to 24 - which is especially relevant as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic." Minister's office - 6552 6500
Premier’s Book Award winners announced17987Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements8550html8/08/2020 2:03:36 AM2020-08-07T13:00:00Z $60,000 Western Australian Writer's Fellowship won by bestselling author and frequent State Library researcher Amanda Curtin $15,000 Premier's Prize for an Emerging Writer won by Holden Sheppard for Invisible Boys (Fremantle Press) $15,000 Premiers Prize for Writing for Children won by Meg McKinlay for Catch a Falling Star (Walker Books Australia) Daisy Utemorrah Award for Unpublished Indigenous Junior and Young Adult Fiction won by Teela May Reid for Our Matriarchs Matter Kim Scott inducted into the Western Australian Writers Hall of Fame The winners of the 2019 Western Australian Premier's Book Awards were announced at the State Library of Western Australia tonight. The ceremony was held in conjunction with the induction of the newest member of the Western Australian Writers Hall of Fame. The night's major winner was Amanda Curtin, who won the $60,000 Western Australian Writer's Fellowship. Amanda will utilise the Fellowship to work on a literary historical fiction set in Western Australia during the 1890s gold rush. The $15,000 Premier's Prize for an Emerging Writer was won by Holden Sheppard for Invisible Boys (Fremantle Press). Judges lauded the powerful young adult novel as funny, yet devastating with vividly imagined characters and dialogue. Meg McKinlay won the $15,000 Premier's Prize for Writing for Children for Catch a Falling Star (Walker Books Australia), a poignant story about love, life and grief that will be popular amongst middle grade readers. The Daisy Utemorrah Award for Unpublished Indigenous Junior and Young Adult Fiction was open to indigenous writers from across Australia, and was won by Teela May Reid for Our Matriarchs Matter. This award was administered and funded by Broome-based indigenous publisher Magabala Books with support from the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries. The Premier's Book Awards are Western Australia's peak awards for writers and focus on supporting Western Australian writers, with a major Fellowship awarded for the second time. At $60,000, the Western Australian Writer's Fellowship is one of the most valuable awards in Australian arts. The reinstatement of the awards to an annual event was a 2017 election commitment by the McGowan Government. Kim Scott was inducted into the Western Australian Writers Hall of Fame. The special panel chose Kim Scott because his fiction is acclaimed locally, nationally and internationally. He is exemplary both as an Australian writer and in the field of indigenous literature; a leader in the wider Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and in his own Noongar community where his ground-breaking work with the Wirlomin Noongar Language and Stories project has had far-reaching effects. The panel said his work was a shining example of how Western Australian stories, well told and beautifully crafted, can create opportunities to learn about our shared past. For more information on the winners, the shortlists and the judging panel, visit http//www.slwa.wa.gov.au Comments attributed to Culture and the Arts Minister David Templeman "I congratulate all the winners tonight - they are wonderful Western Australians that are rightfully being recognised for their work. "I am particularly pleased that these awards have been refocused on promoting Western Australian writers. "Making a living from writing is not easy and it is important to promote our writers because our stories are important. "It is fitting that the awards are held in the State Library as it is a place of learning, a place where literature and writing is celebrated. "I urge the Western Australian community to support our local writers, and a good place to start is with the winners and those on the shortlist of these important awards." Minister's office - 6552 5400