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More than 500 artists to perform at PIAF’s Home10579Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements2630html12/02/2016 4:32:11 AM2016-02-12T04:30:00ZFree public performance on opening weekend of Perth International Arts Festival Home is a musical and visual journey of Perth's historyFeatures Tim Minchin, The Waifs, John Butler Trio, 60 piece orchestra and more Langley Park will be transformed from 7.45pm this Saturday, February 13 The 2016 Perth International Arts Festival opens this weekend with a free Australian work called Home, this Saturday night from 7.45pm at Langley Park. Lotterywest Festival Opening Home features more than 500 musicians and artists. It will take the audience on a musical and visual journey of Perth's history, from our suburbs, landscapes and foundation. Culture and the Arts Minister John Day acknowledged the array of local talent PIAF had brought together to collaborate on this exclusive performance for the State. "Some of West Australia's most renowned artists will gather on Saturday night to open the festival with an event that celebrates the concept of home," Mr Day said. "The stellar line-up for this home-grown event will see participation from Tim Minchin, The Waifs, John Butler Trio, Shaun Tan and Tim Winton as well as The Drones, The Triffids, The Panics, the Pigram Brothers and Ernie Dingo." The Minister said similar to The Giants last year, the local community had been involved in making the performance come to life. "More than 4,000 students from 32 schools in Perth and the regions have made lanterns for the show," he said. "Following the performance, hundreds of school children will carry the lanterns to a location at Elizabeth Quay. "Home director Nigel Jamieson has also collaborated with Noongar elder and artist, Dr Richard Walley OAM to create a powerful Welcome to Country that will include 300 members of the Noongar community. "I encourage everyone to take the opportunity to attend Home, or one of about 350 events hosted by PIAF from now until March 6." The 2016 PIAF program will again provide a diverse range of cultural experiences for all West Australians including theatre, music, film, arts, literature and free community events. Fact FileHome is supported by the State Government through Lotterywest and Tourism WA For more information, visit https//perthfestival.com.au Minister's office - 6552 6200
Grant for Rottnest Aboriginal burial ground work10575Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements3460html12/02/2016 2:35:24 AM2016-02-12T02:35:00Z$500,440 to further the restoration of the Wadjemup Aboriginal Burial Ground Money for landscaping and conservationInterpretative signs to be installed at entry points The Rottnest Foundation has been presented with a $500,440 Lotterywest grant to further the restoration of the Wadjemup Aboriginal Burial Ground at Rottnest Island. Aboriginal Affairs Minister Peter Collier said the funds would help pay for planting and conservation works at the site, and for the development and installation of interpretative signs at the main entry points to the burial ground. "This is an important step in the healing process for many Aboriginal West Australians, and an important step in our State's journey towards reconciliation," Mr Collier said. The restoration of the burial ground, which was once a camping area, will provide a place of healing for the ancestors of Aboriginal people who died on the island and have laid in unmarked graves ever since. "The largely unknown history of Rottnest Island and the Wadjemup burial site has been a cause of great distress for Aboriginal people," the Minister said. About 3,700 Aboriginal people from across the State were sent to Rottnest Island between 1838 and 1931. More than 370 of these men and boys died while in custody on Rottnest Island, often as a result of introduced diseases such as measles, whooping cough and influenza. The restoration project will include the development of a public space where people can meet, share stories and pay their respects to those who are buried at the site. "It is important we acknowledge the history of the island, and share this history with the many local and international visitors that come to Rottnest Island," Mr Collier said. Fact FileIn the Whadjuk language, Wadjemup means 'a place across the water where the spirits rest'WA is the only State where money raised from lottery products is distributed directly back to the community to support not-for-profit organisationsLast financial year, Lotterywest raised $283 million to support the WA communityFor more about Lotterywest grants, visit http//www.lotteryest.wa.gov.au/grants Minister's office - 6552 6300
Centenary milestone for unique ANZAC Cottage10574Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements2080html12/02/2016 2:30:10 AM2016-02-12T02:30:00Z100th anniversary of Mount Hawthorn home built in just one dayCottage stands as an enduring tribute to our ANZACs One hundred years ago, in the pre-dawn darkness of February 12, some 200 volunteers gathered in Mount Hawthorn to embark on an extraordinary community project. They had come to build a home to honour the Gallipoli veterans, and by late afternoon that same day, ANZAC Cottage was built - one of Australia's earliest memorials to the Great War. Veterans Minister Joe Francis today acknowledged the legacy of the volunteers and their community. "The construction of ANZAC Cottage in a single day is testament to the tenacity and generosity of the Australian spirit, and a community's determination to honour those who had fought for our country," Mr Francis said. "Officially opened on April 15, 1916, the cottage was home for returned wounded ANZAC soldier Private Cuthbert John Porter and his family until his death in 1964." In 1991, the cottage, which had become dilapidated, was passed to the Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia Western Australia Branch (VVAA WA), which with help from Lotterywest and other donors restored the building to near its original condition. In 2006, the cottage was gifted to the then Town of Vincent, but today continues to serve as the headquarters of the VVAA WA. "I commend the VVAA WA and the City of Vincent for their efforts in ensuring future generations are able to appreciate the role the cottage has played, and continues to play, in honouring our ANZACs as well as our veterans from all conflicts," the Minister said. Fact FileANZAC Cottage is located at 38 Kalgoorlie Street, Mount HawthornThe cottage is open to the public on the first Sunday of each month from 1pm to 4pmFor more information contact Anne Chapple on 0411 445 582 or email chapan@highway1.com.au Minister's office - 6552 6500
History of the World opens at the WA Museum10573Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4950html12/02/2016 2:00:06 AM2016-02-12T02:00:00ZA History of the World in 100 Objects at the WA Museum an Australian first Two million years of human history from the British Museum on display Artefacts include the bronze Head of Augustus The international exhibition from the British Museum, A History of the World in 100 Objects, opens tomorrow at the Western Australian Museum in the Perth Cultural Centre until June 18, 2016. The exhibition showcases two million years of human history, from the oldest objects in the British Museum's collections to those from the present day. Culture and the Arts Minister John Day said West Australians would be the first in Australia to see this extraordinary exhibition. "We are one of only two locations to secure the rights to A History of the World and I encourage everyone to take the opportunity to visit the museum and see it for yourself," Mr Day said. The WA Museum has selected the Yamaji antennas as the Western Australian object to be displayed alongside the exhibition. The antennas highlight the importance of the Murchison Widefield Array, as part of the world's largest radio astronomy project, the Square Kilometre Array, and the unique relationship that emerged between the astrophysicists and the Yamaji people. The Minister said A History of the World would be the last exhibition to be displayed at the WA Museum's Perth site before it closed to accommodate works for the new museum. "The museum is about to undergo the most significant transformation in its nearly 125 year history," he said. "The new museum will be built at the existing site, incorporating the heritage buildings, and is expected to open in 2020. "The museum's other sites in Fremantle (Maritime Museum and Shipwreck Galleries), Albany, Geraldton and Kalgoorlie-Boulder will still be open. A number of pop-up experiences will also take place during this time." A History of the World in 100 Objects tells its story exclusively through artefacts people have made including those which have been admired and preserved, or those which were used, broken and discarded. From stone to gold, clay to plastic, the objects range in size from a 1.6 metre tall Assyrian relief, to gold coins of Croesus. Fact FileThis is the third major international exhibition presented as part of the WA Museum's relationship with the British MuseumThe exhibition will also be shown at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra The Government has committed $428.3 million to the new museum projectFor more information and to purchase tickets, visit http//www.museum.wa.gov.au Minister's office - 6552 6200
Market City sold to industry consortium10570Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements9960html12/02/2016 1:30:07 AM2016-02-12T01:30:00ZMarket City sale secured with Perth Markets Ltd's $135.5 million bidSale marks the first asset to be sold in the Government's asset sales program Market City, Western Australia's fruit and vegetable wholesale market and distribution hub, is set to become industry owned and operated, following a successful $135.5 million bid by Perth Markets Ltd. Treasurer Mike Nahan today announced that Perth Markets Ltd, an industry consortium led by the Chamber of Fruit and Vegetable Industries in WA, had completed negotiations with the State Government to purchase the Market City site at Canning Vale, which would continue to operate as WA's primary trading centre for fruit and vegetables. The sale of Market City, currently managed and owned by the Perth Market Authority, is a landmark for the State Government's asset sales program, as the first asset to be sold. "I am pleased to announce the sale of Market City, which has delivered an outstanding result for the State and industry alike," Dr Nahan said. "It marks a major achievement as the first completed sale under the Government's asset sales program, and affirms that State-owned assets present a great investment opportunity to the private sector." Perth Markets Ltd, which was appointed as the preferred respondent in December 2015, undertook a competitive tender process against a strong field of bidders. The Treasurer said Perth Markets Ltd drew on its consortium's industry experience to submit an outstanding proposal. "Perth Markets Ltd has demonstrated a strong commitment to the continuation of the market function. The consortium's experience in local and interstate markets will be a key to the ongoing success of Market City and WA's fruit and vegetable industry," he said. Perth Markets Ltd will be required to operate under a range of control measures, including two key legislated requirements, both mandatory for a period of 20 years, which include to continue to operate the Central Trading Area exclusively as a wholesale fruit and vegetable marketto deliver additional warehouse storage for market-related purposes, as part of any future development plans. Clauses within the contract will ensure Market City tenants are helped through the transition, with control measures around electricity pricing and the staged implementation of land tax. Fact FileMarket City trades more than 200,000 tonnes of fresh produce each yearFollowing a transition phase, Perth Markets Ltd will assume ownership of Market City on March 31, 2016The proceeds from this sale will be used to pay off the Perth Market Authority's debt and reduce State debt Treasurer's office - 6552 5700
Oldest Australian skate park heritage listed10569Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements2940html12/02/2016 1:05:14 AM2016-02-12T01:00:00Z40-year-old Albany Snake Run Skateboard Park recognised for heritage value Albany Snake Run Skateboard Park, Australia's oldest purpose-built skate park, and the second oldest in the world, has been State heritage listed. Heritage Minister Albert Jacob made the announcement on the eve of the skate park's 40th anniversary celebrations in Albany tomorrow. "This 140 metre-long concrete track is not only highly valued by the people of Albany but by skaters internationally as a prototype that influenced early skate park designs in the USA," Mr Jacob said. The Minister said the genesis for the skate park came from Albany high school students who raised $3,000 in three months to build the skate park in 1976. "So impressed with the enthusiasm of the students, the then Albany council donated $10,000 and the land. As such, it is thought to be the world's first community-built skate park," he said. "From these humble beginnings, the 'snake run' rose to international prominence when the then world skateboard champion Russ Howell described it as 'the best track I've ever seen'. The skate park went on to host Australia's first National Skateboard Championship in 1979." Mr Jacob said of the nearly 500 skate parks built around the world during the 1970s, only 30 still existed today. The oldest skate park was in New Zealand. "For skaters around the world, the Albany skate park tells an important story about the history of their sport, which grew to become a global phenomenon and is still as popular as ever today," he said. "In recognition of its significance, the State Government is the first in Australia to heritage list a skate park, making Albany only the third skate park to be heritage-listed in the world." The City of Albany, in partnership with the Perth International Arts Festival 2016 Great Southern program, will host a free community event, including skating performances and demonstrations, tomorrow from 11.30am at the park in Hare Street, Albany. Fact FileFor more information on the skate park, visit http//stateheritage.wa.gov.au For more information on the anniversary celebration, visit https//perthfestival.com.au/great-southern-festival/whats-on/2016/the-snake-run-project or http//www.amazingalbany.com.au Minister's office - 6552 5800
Premier opens Perth International Arts Festival10433Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5140html11/02/2016 3:00:09 AM2016-02-11T03:00:00ZPIAF runs from February 11 to March 6, 2016 showcasing the best in arts from around the worldNew location at Elizabeth Quay for Chevron Festival Gardens Premier Colin Barnett tonight launches the 2016 Perth International Arts Festival at a special festival eve celebration at Elizabeth Quay, the new location for Chevron Festival Gardens. PIAF is the longest running international multi-arts festival in the southern hemisphere, with performances in about 350 events by more than 1,000 artists from Australia and around the world. "Perth is cementing itself as a key destination for the arts and this year's festival promises an exciting program of music, literature, theatre and free community events," Mr Barnett said. "It is a special time of year to be in Western Australia and to experience the excitement, vitality and magic that an arts festival can bring." The Premier said a highlight of this year's festival would be the free opening event, Home, on Saturday evening, featuring a stellar line up of Western Australian talent. Lotterywest has contributed $7.6 million to the 2016 festival, which includes support for the new PIAF Connect program. "State Government support, through Lotterywest, has enabled the launch of this new program which will foster the development of local artists and industry," Mr Barnett said. "PIAF Connect provides important opportunities to link local and international artists together to explore ideas and share their practices, which will contribute to the long-term future of the arts industry in WA." The Premier also acknowledged founding partner The University of Western Australia, and the role that Lotterywest played in supporting the Lotterywest Festival Films, which brings the best films from around the world to two unique outdoor cinemas in Perth. The Festival Films will also travel to the Great Southern with a selection of films screening in Albany and Denmark. Fact FileThe Lotterywest Festival Opening, Home is a free community event at Langley Park on February 13, supported by Tourism WA and the City of PerthFor more information, visit http//www.perthfestival.com.au Premier's office - 6552 5000
More than $8 million in grants for medical research10430Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4350html11/02/2016 1:18:08 AM2016-02-11T00:00:00ZTwo research infrastructure support programs to provide more than $8 million for medical research Grants to support institutes and high-performing researchers Western Australia's health and medical research community will benefit from more than $8 million of State Government funding that supports researchers by helping meet costs associated with delivering their projects. Announcing the funding, Health Minister Kim Hames said 138 high-performing researchers would share in $6.125 million of Medical and Health Research Infrastructure Fund grants while six Western Australian research institutes would benefit from grants totalling $2.09 million under the Research Institute Support program. "The Government takes great pride in supporting research that has the potential to make big improvements to the health and wellbeing of West Australians and the wider community," Dr Hames said. "These programs will support research across a broad range of fields including gastroenterology, psychiatry, cardiology, neuroscience and respiratory medicine. "Both programs allocate grants according to the level of income obtained from nationally and/or internationally competitive, peer-reviewed research funding bodies such as the National Health and Medical Research Council, so our money is supporting research excellence in WA." The Minister said both programs helped researchers meet the costs of administration and infrastructure such as clerical support, computer equipment and laboratory equipment - items not normally covered by competitive research grants. Recipient institutions for 2015-16 areCurtin UniversityEdith Cowan UniversityHarry Perkins Institute of Medical ResearchInstitute for Respiratory HealthLions Eye InstituteMurdoch UniversityTelethon Kids InstituteThe University of Western AustraliaWestern Australian Neuroscience Research InstituteWest Australian Sleep Disorders Research InstituteWomen and Infants Research Foundation. Fact FileRound 19 of the Medical and Health Research Infrastructure Fund grants brings to more than $84 million the amount provided since the program started in 1997Research Institute Support program is in its second year, with more than $3 million provided so far to research institutes for infrastructure and clerical support For more information, visit the WA Health website Minister's office - 6552 5300
Gas to energise new Eastern Goldfields projects10429Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5540html10/02/2016 11:57:18 PM2016-02-10T23:00:00Z$140 million pipeline delivers jobs, efficiency and environmental benefitsPotential energy supply to new gold, uranium and rare earths ventures The commissioning of the 293 kilometre Eastern Goldfields Pipeline will bolster the development of new mining projects and increase returns from existing operations in one of the State's most promising resources regions. Officially turning on the gas at the Tropicana Gold Mine, Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Marmion said the $140 million pipeline, constructed and owned by APA Group, would help energise the Eastern Goldfields. "This is a game-changer for the area, with eight operational or proposed projects in line to benefit, potentially employing 3,000 people," Mr Marmion said. "While Sunrise Dam and Tropicana gold mines will reap the rewards of dependable, cleaner fuel, some of the State's most exciting new gold, uranium and rare earths ventures are now within reach of the gas network. "Not only did the pipeline support up to 330 jobs during construction, it will underpin even more jobs and opportunities in this rich and diverse mineral province." The Minister said the pipeline was a great example of how lead agency work by the Department of Mines and Petroleum (DMP) and industry collaboration could drive down costs and deliver infrastructure ahead of schedule. It was completed in less than 12 months, extending from the existing Murrin Murrin/Yarraloola terminus of the main Goldfields Gas Transmission Pipeline to AngloGold Ashanti Australia Ltd's Sunrise Dam Gold Mine and on to Tropicana (AngloGold Ashanti Australia Ltd 70 per cent and manager, Independence Group NL 30 per cent). "Replacing diesel and LNG for power generation by piping in natural gas at Sunrise Dam and Tropicana will slash fuel truck movements by 1,450 per year, a huge benefit to graziers and other local road users," he said. Mr Marmion congratulated APA Group, AngloGold Ashanti Australia Ltd, local pastoralists, the shires of Laverton and Menzies, and the DMP for their collaborative approach. "The pipeline is a major milestone but I believe even more discoveries will be made in the vicinity, with the State Government's successful Exploration Incentive Scheme helping fund deep drilling, plus seismic and airborne geophysical surveys," he said. Fact FileThe pipeline, made up of 16,700, 18m lengths of line pipe, now extends the Goldfields gas system to almost 1,800kmAnnual fuel truck movements at Tropicana and Sunrise Dam mines will drop from 1,900 to 450DMP played the lead agency role in the approvals processExtensions could see gas supplied to the Granny Smith gold, Gruyere gold, Mount Morgan gold, Red October gold, and Mount Weld rare earths operations Pipeline extensions could also supply the proposed Mount Morgan and Gruyere gold projects and the Mulga Rock uranium project Minister's office - 6552 6800
Artists sought for public art at new museum10427Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5570html10/02/2016 11:50:56 PM2016-02-10T22:00:00Z$1.6 million allocated for public art at the new museum Public art to reflect and interpret the stories of Western Australia Artist teams to develop either a single work or multiple works Artist teams are being asked to register their interest in creating the public art for Western Australia's new museum. Culture and the Arts Minister John Day said the public art would reflect and interpret the stories of WA. "The new museum is a truly exciting project that provides a unique opportunity to showcase the stories of our people and places to the world," Mr Day said. "Public art will be a key element of the visitor experience helping to define what makes the new museum different and memorable." Local, national and international artist teams, including Aboriginal artists, are encouraged to register their interest. The public art commission will be offered to an artist team to develop either a single work or multiple works. They will work closely with the successful managing contractor and WA Museum content teams. The Minister said public art was part of the ongoing transformation of Perth as a vibrant, modern and creative city. "Public art significantly contributes to the quality of the built environment and major projects such as the Fiona Stanley Hospital, new children's hospital and Elizabeth Quay have already benefited from innovative artworks that bring a new level of design excellence and visitor engagement to these sites," he said. The new museum public artist team is expected to be appointed in mid-2016. Fact FileThe new museum is scheduled to open in the Perth Cultural Centre in 2020The Government has committed $428.3 million to the new museum projectFor more information, visit http//www.museum.wa.gov.au/publicart Minister's office - 6552 6200
Thousands find a new way with WA NDIS My Way10368Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5820html10/02/2016 3:00:24 AM2016-02-10T03:00:00Z2,058 people now taking part in the WA NDIS My Way trial1,724 people have a completed planLevels of satisfaction continue to be positive The State Government's WA National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) My Way trial continues to support people with disability to achieve positive outcomes, with the latest report showing 90 per cent of goals are being achieved. Disability Services Minister Helen Morton said people with disability were continuing to benefit from the increased choice and control they had over the supports and services they required. "Now that we are three quarters of the way into the two-year trial there are many individuals, especially in the Lower South-West, who have completed and reviewed multiple plans, making the consistently high achievement of plan goals even more pleasing," Mrs Morton said. "When speaking with individuals and families involved in the trial, I consistently hear how choice, flexibility and the localised approach have been key contributors to the benefits they are experiencing. "There are now 100 endorsed providers that provide a wider range of supports and services, allowing people with disability and their families to choose what best suits them. We cannot underestimate the key role service providers play in supporting individuals to turn their plans into reality and achieve their goals. Overall, the quarter six report showed that 2,058 people are now eligible to access supports and services through the WA NDIS My Way trial with no waitlist for people applying to be part of the trial. The Minister said discussions between the Australian and State governments about the future governance arrangements of an NDIS in WA were already under way. "I will be seeking to have conversations with the community to ensure we develop a model that best meets people's needs and is nationally consistent with the principles of the NDIS," she said. Fact FileFor more information, visit http//www.disability.wa.gov.au/wa-ndis-my-way/wa-ndis-my-way/quarterly-reports The two trials being run in WA are the State Government's WA NDIS My Way trial in the Lower South-West and the Cockburn-Kwinana area, and the Australian Government's NDIS National Disability Insurance Agency trial in the Perth HillsFor more information, phone 1800 996 214 or email MyWay@dsc.wa.gov.au Minister's office - 6552 6900
Harvard partnership to drive innovation in WA schools10364Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements9360html10/02/2016 12:27:59 AM2016-02-10T00:00:00ZTop principals to join leadership program with Harvard University Up to 20 Independent Public School principals will participate in 2016 Exceptional Western Australian principals will travel to Harvard University to learn from the world's best educators in the first-ever partnership of its kind in Australia. Announcing the partnership with the Boston-based university, Education Minister Peter Collier said up to 20 Independent Public School principals would participate in a two-year leadership development program. "This amazing opportunity will help drive the next era of innovation and reform in public schools," Mr Collier said. The Independent Public School Principals' Fellowship Program includes an intensive course delivered by the Harvard Graduate School of Education, online learning and executive mentoring. The Minister said the fellowship program aimed to acknowledge the very best principals. and extend their influence and expertise within schools and into the community. Harvard was chosen because of its international reputation for excellence in school leadership development, and the opportunity it gives WA principals to meet their colleagues from around the world. "We must always strive for improvement, share ideas and give our best leaders the skills to advance our public school system even further," Mr Collier said. There will be another intake of up to 20 more principals into the fellowship program in 2017. Fact FileThe first Independent Public Schools in WA started operating in 2010There are now 445 Independent Public Schools in WAUp to 50 more schools will be operating as Independent Public Schools in 2017 Minister's office - 6552 6300
Wiluna project highlights State’s uranium future10363Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6320html10/02/2016 12:24:12 AM2016-02-09T23:00:00ZPotential 900 tonnes annual productionWA industry promises up to 1,300 long-term jobs The proposed Wiluna uranium project highlights the importance of the Liberal National Government's long-term support for Western Australian uranium mining and the business and job opportunities it will generate. Visiting the Toro Energy Ltd's site today, Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Marmion said it was well positioned to become the State's first uranium exporter. "Our determination to back this industry has already seen more than $300 million invested in uranium exploration and development," Mr Marmion said. "Toro's Wiluna project is expected to employ up to 350 people during construction and then support 170 full-time jobs, with a production life of at least 25 years." The Minister said it was also good for the global environment, with Toro aiming for annual uranium concentrate exports of 900 tonnes a year from four mine sites in the Wiluna area. "That translates into a potential saving of 33 million tonnes a year of carbon dioxide emissions, compared to coal-fired power generation," he said. "Despite challenging market conditions, I have no doubt that world uranium demand will grow in the wake of December's Paris climate change agreement and the renewed focus on lowering carbon emissions." Mr Marmion said Western Australia was now well-placed to capitalise on this expansion, with world-leading regulation ensuring safe and responsible development. "WA's four uranium projects promise to employ 1,300 people and create a $1 billion export industry, so uranium is good news for local communities and the State as a whole," he said. Fact FileWA's four potential uranium projects are Yeelirrie, Wiluna, Mulga Rock and KintyreYeelirrie is the largest resource (127.3 million pounds), followed by Wiluna (80.5 million pounds), Mulga Rock (75.03 million pounds) and Kintyre (55 million pounds)China has 30 operating reactors, with plans to double nuclear power generation by 2020India is building six reactors and has a further 22 plannedThe World Nuclear Association lists 439 reactors operating worldwide, with 64 being built and 159 on order or planned Minister's office - 6552 6800
New IR commissioners appointed10362Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements11800html10/02/2016 12:19:14 AM2016-02-09T22:00:00ZTwo new commissioners for the WA Industrial Relations CommissionAppointments begin in March 2016 Barrister and solicitor Damian Matthews and head of the Employment Law Centre of Western Australia Toni Emmanuel have been appointed as commissioners of the Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission. Commerce Minister Michael Mischin said the pair had a wealth of experience in industrial relations matters and would further enhance the commission's standing as the State's independent industrial umpire. "Ms Emmanuel has headed up the not-for-profit Employment Law Centre of Western Australia for the past nine years, while Mr Matthews has been a barrister and solicitor at the State Solicitor's Office for 23 years," Mr Mischin said. "Ms Emmanuel has spent most of her legal career tirelessly helping vulnerable employees in a wide range of employment matters. "Mr Matthews has worked for both Liberal and Labor governments over the years and has proven his professionalism and impartiality in many complex matters. "The appointments demonstrate the State Government's commitment to ensuring the commission is able to deliver the sort of service West Australians are entitled to expect." The Minister said the commission was well respected and played an important role in maintaining harmonious industrial relations in WA, particularly in the public sector. Its role has become more complex over the years. With a public sector workforce of about 138,000 employees, it is inevitable that disputes will arise. It is in everybody's interests to have a strong independent body to prevent and settle these disputes, balancing the competing interests of the parties dispassionately, and with professionalism and objectivity," he said. The appointments were made after expressions of interest were advertised for the roles and fill the vacancies left by the resignations of commissioners Jennifer Harrison and Stephanie Mayman last year. Fact FileThe Western Australian Industrial Relations Commission is an independent quasi-judicial tribunal. The commission's primary objectives are to prevent and settle industrial disputes in WA by conciliation and arbitration if necessaryThe commission also sits as the Road Freight Transport Industry Tribunal and the Occupational Safety and Health TribunalWith the appointments of Ms Emmanuel and Mr Matthews to the commission, there will be five commissioners (to conciliate and arbitrate disputes) and one acting president (to chair appeals)For more information, visit http//www.wairc.wa.gov.au Minister's office - 6552 5600
Farm deposits good news for farmers3670Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4580html9/02/2016 7:58:51 AM2016-02-09T07:40:00Z​Farmers can bank up to $800,000 for times of hardshipChanges to Farm Management Deposits scheme welcomed The Australian Government's decision to help farm operators better manage their finances during periods of uncertainty has been welcomed. Agriculture and Food Minister Ken Baston said the Australian Government would tomorrow introduce legislation delivering on a key Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper initiative to strengthen the Farm Management Deposits scheme. "This will help farmers use income generated in good years to prepare for the inevitable bad ones," Mr Baston said. "These farm managed deposits are the greatest thing since sliced bread to help with drought management and bushfire, so I welcome any reforms that make them more attractive for saving." The Minister said he had been lobbying the Australian Government for many years for such help. "This is a positive move. It's important for farm operators because it allows them to put away money pre-tax in good seasons and fall back on it during periods of hardship. It makes good sense and I fully support these reforms for the business structure of agriculture in Australia," he said. From July 1 this year, farm operators will be able to double the deposit limit for farm management deposits from $400,000 to $800,000. The changes allow financial institutions to offer the schemes as farm business loan offset accounts and re-establish early access provisions in times of drought. Fact FileAustralian farmers had deposited $3.96 billion in farm managed deposits by December 31, 2015For more information, visit http//www.agriculture.gov.au/fmds Minister's office - 6552 5400
More specialist doctors choosing Albany3668Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6010html9/02/2016 6:11:07 AM2016-02-09T06:00:00ZState-of-the-art health campus attracts specialistsExpanded range of specialties offered locally The Great Southern region now has more than 24 medical specialists living in the region with the appointment of the first resident geriatrician who will be based at Albany Health Campus at the end of this month. Health Minister Kim Hames said the facilities at the recently constructed Albany Health Campus provided an excellent opportunity for doctors wanting to work in a state-of-the-art facility in a regional location. "The increasing number of highly regarded specialists choosing to live and work in Albany has resulted in improved medical services, increased capacity to treat more patients locally and has provided a more sustainable workforce in the region over the past three years," Dr Hames said. "The resident specialists include an oncologist and general physician who together have been providing a highly valued service to the Great Southern community for 30 years. "That's in addition to a well-known and respected Western Australian respiratory physician who moved to Albany in 2015 and an orthopaedic surgeon who has performed almost 1,000 elective and emergency procedures in the past two years." The Minister said the health campus now had three resident general surgeons who, with their visiting colleagues, performed the second highest number of elective surgery cases each year in the WA Country Health Service. Other specialists work across areas such as general medicine, critical care, mental health, medical imaging, public health, palliative care and obstetrics. The increase in local specialists and regular visiting specialists has been credited with a reduction in the number of patients accessing Patient Assisted Travel payments to travel to Perth to attend specialist appointments. There had also been an increase in the number of junior doctors at Albany Health Campus with eight resident medical officers, six interns and nine registrars, and the facility is expanding its telehealth service to reduce the number of patients needing to travel out of the region. Dr Hames said Albany Health Campus had earned a reputation for its high-tech education and simulation training facilities, plus its adoption of cutting edge technology such as electronic discharge summaries to improve communication between hospitals, specialists and GPs. Fact File$170.4 million Albany Health Campus opened in May 2013, including $60.9 million Royalties for Regions fundingA geriatrician is a specialist who focuses on health care of elderly peopleFor more information visit http//getthebiggerpicture.health.wa.gov.au Minister's office - 6552 5300
Lead adviser appointed to work with Keystart3666Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements9960html9/02/2016 5:30:06 AM2016-02-09T05:30:00ZGresham Advisory Partners appointed as lead adviser for the partial sale of Keystart's loan bookAnother milestone in the State Government's asset sales program The State Government today announced that Gresham Advisory Partners had been appointed as the lead financial adviser for the partial sale of Keystart's loan book. Treasurer Mike Nahan said Gresham was appointed following a competitive process with a deep field of responses from financial advisory firms. Gresham will lead a competitive process to select a private financing partner to acquire part of Keystart's loan book. "Gresham's level of recent experience in conducting similar transactions was a major factor in their selection," Dr Nahan said. "This is an important milestone in the Government's asset sales program and the partial sale of Keystart's loan book will reduce gross debt. This initiative will not change the service levels or terms and conditions for existing Keystart customers and will not impact upon Keystart's existing interest rate setting policy, lending eligibility criteria or rigorous loan assessment process." Housing Minister Colin Holt said Keystart's lending had reached record levels under the Liberal National Government, allowing it to help thousands of West Australians on low to medium incomes. "We want more people to have this same opportunity by ensuring Keystart's ability to approve new loans is not hampered," Mr Holt said. "Keystart has helped Western Australian home owners for more than 25 years and is a great success story envied by other States. Keystart will continue to play an important part in the Government's Affordable Housing Strategy 2010-2020 Opening Doors to Affordable Housing, a strategy that has already delivered more than 20,000 affordable housing opportunities with an aim to deliver 30,000 by 2020." Fact FileKeystart provides low deposit and shared equity residential home loans to eligible West Australians on low-to-medium incomes who are unable to obtain finance from private lendersFor more information, visit http//www.keystart.com.au Treasurer's office - 6552 5700 Housing Minister's office - 6552 6100
Kimberley family violence model gets national tick3664Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements3330html9/02/2016 3:00:07 AM2016-02-09T03:00:00ZResearch confirms community-led responses the best approach to indigenous family violenceNational body confirms State Government's Safer Families, Safer Communities Kimberley Family Violence Regional Plan 2015-2020 is on the right track A national research paper has shown the State Government is on the right track in its response to family violence in Aboriginal communities. Child Protection Minister Helen Morton launched the paper Innovative models in addressing violence against Indigenous women, commissioned by Australia's National Research Organisation for Women's Safety (ANROWS), in Fitzroy Crossing today. In an event at the Marninwarntikura Fitzroy Women's Resource and Legal Centre, Mrs Morton said the centre was a leading example of a community-led approach to family violence. "This centre is singled out because it recognises that violence against women is a whole-of-community problem which needs a whole-of-community response," she said. "For a service to be successful it needs a community-led response involving elders, community leaders and representatives and input from local government and community sector organisations. "Women need to be central to the design of programs to address violence, and services that provide access to justice and safety need to include a healing centre." The Minister said these concepts were all central to the State Government's Safer Families, Safer Communities Kimberley Family Violence Regional Plan 2015-2020. "Like Marninwarntikura, our Kimberley plan focuses on strong partnerships between government agencies, community sector services, Aboriginal community-controlled organisations and community members," she said. ANROWS chief executive officer Heather Nancarrow travelled from Sydney to attend the co-convened event. Fact FileANROWS was established under the National Plan to Reduce Violence Against Women and their Children 2010-2022ANROWS is funded by the Australian and State and Territory governmentsLiberal National Government contributes $150,600 per year to ANROWS Minister's office - 6552 6900
Edible wall garden wins invention award for students3654Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5910html9/02/2016 1:03:26 AM2016-02-09T01:00:00ZCarey Baptist College wins Young Re-inventor of the Year AwardVertical garden from re-used plastic containers provides food to school and keeps waste out of landfill A school in Perth's south-eastern suburbs has won the Young Re-inventor of the Year Award by re-using waste materials to build a vertical herb garden for food technology classes. Environment Minister Albert Jacob said the entry from the 2015 Year 11 students at Carey Baptist College in Harrisdale was the outstanding project among the 111 other contenders. The students built the garden with plastic milk containers from the school cafe and wooden pallets collected from nearby street verges. Mr Jacob today presented the students with a $1,500 prize pack, including composting bins, worm farms, re-useable sandwich wraps. The students will also be able to attend workshops on composting and worm farming. "I am encouraged that these students were able to realise their vision for this clever garden," he said. "Through this project they have looked after the environment and delivered so many benefits to their school. "By participating in this project, young people were able to learn how to create a more sustainable environment and reduce landfill." One of the judging criteria was the entries used items that were routinely thrown away. Judges were impressed that the students' vertical garden invention was made from milk cartons from the school and the food from the garden was used in food technology classes. The finalists for the Young Re-inventor of the Year Award includedPrimary school finalist Coco Hasler from St Denis School in JoondannaHigh school finalist Darcie Watts from Exmouth District High School Community and individual finalists Ben Salter from South Yunderup and William Catchpole from High WycombeSwitch your thinking finalist Jillian Kien from Rossmoyne Senior High School. The award is co-ordinated by the South East Regional Energy Group, with support from the State Government through the Western Australian landfill levy. Fact FileMore than 700 people from schools and community groups submitted 112 entries For more information, visit http//www.switchyourthinking.com/our-projects/young-reinventor-of-the-year Minister's office - 6552 5800
Trial of autonomous vehicle3648Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements15800html9/02/2016 12:46:23 AM2016-02-09T00:30:00ZAutonomous vehicle trial the first of its kind AustraliaWill allow RAC, with support from the State Government, to understand and learn about autonomous vehicle technology Western Australia is leading the way in automated vehicle technology with the staged trial of a driverless and fully electric shuttle bus to take place this year. Transport Minister Dean Nalder said the Department of Transport was working closely with the RAC to ensure compliance with road and vehicle safety standards while they trialled an autonomous shuttle bus. "It is not a matter of if this technology will come to WA, but when it will, and that time is fast approaching. Initially, the trials will be conducted at RAC's driving centre, but eventually the shuttle will take to Perth roads," Mr Nalder said. The Minister said the Department of Transport was working with the RAC to identify the routes on Perth roads where the trials would take place. "It is important West Australians are aware this technology is not confined to Hollywood blockbusters, but is actually coming to Perth. "To ensure we are working towards providing the best integrated and intelligent transport services and solutions for the State, it is important to trial new innovative modes of transport, and this is one of those modes," Mr Nalder said. These types of vehicles are being tested and trialled in other countries and have autonomous features such as radar cruise control and lane detection warning systems. "Another of the safety features of the shuttle bus is its multi-sensor technology, providing 3D perception that allows it to map the environment, detect obstacles on the road and interpret traffic signs," the Minister said. Mr Nalder said the State Government would benefit from the partnering between RAC and the Department of Transport, as experts from both worked together on this innovative and important transport project. Fact FileThe shuttle bus has been developed by NAVYA SAS, a French company specialising in intelligent transport systems The shuttle bus can transport up to 15 passengers and has a maximum speed of 45kmh with an average speed of 25kmh Minister's office - 6552 6400