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Commercial lawyer appointed to State Administrative Tribunal6924Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 8:10:50 AM2021-09-17T08:10:00Z Nova Oldfield appointed ordinary member of State Administrative Tribunal Five-year appointment part of increase to SAT membershipAttorney General John Quigley is pleased to announce the appointment of commercial and business lawyer Nova Oldfield as an ordinary member of the State Administrative Tribunal. Ms. Oldfield's appointment brings to 21 the number of full-time non-judicial members of the SAT, which has been boosted through additional Government funding. The funding by Treasury and the Department of Justice has now increased the Tribunal's membership by four to 22, leaving one more vacancy to fill. Since 2007, Ms. Oldfield has been director and principal lawyer of her firm Oldfield Legal, which specialises in company, commercial and business law and strategy. She was previously Legal Officer at the Public Trustee of Western Australia for five years. Ms. Oldfield co-founded the Small Firm Forum, has served on Law Society of WA committees and is a member of the South Metropolitan Health Service Human Research Ethics Committee. She has been a guest lecturer and legal educator and engaged in many years of volunteer legal service. Comments attributed to Attorney General John Quigley "I am delighted to announce the appointment of Ms. Nova Oldfield as an ordinary member of the State Administrative Tribunal. "Aside from her extensive engagement with the small business community, Ms. Oldfield brings a wealth of business planning, estate and probate expertise, including her years of service at the Public Trustee, to her new role. "The Tribunal now has five senior members and 16 ordinary members, with another full-time ordinary member to be appointed soon. "This appointment represents further investment in the important work of the Tribunal and increases its capacity to oversee a broad range of matters from large commercial disputes to safeguarding the rights of vulnerable community members." Attorney General's office - 6552 6800
Tjuntjuntjara agreement ends 20-year campaign for land tenure6923Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 5:02:48 AM2021-09-17T05:00:00Z ​Indigenous Land Use Agreement signed with Spinifex traditional owners Agreement honours native title rights for Tjuntjuntjara Community Security of land tenure to support further social, cultural and economic developmentThe McGowan Government today signed a long-awaited agreement with the traditional owners of the Tjuntjuntjara Community, reflecting their native title rights and formally acknowledging their community in its current location. Lands Minister Tony Buti and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Stephen Dawson visited the community to meet with traditional owners and finalise the agreement, which will enable formal tenure to be granted over the community's living area. More than 78,500 hectares of land will be excised from the Class A Great Victoria Desert Nature Reserve to grant a perpetual lease, suitable to enable further development of the community and deliver improved social, economic and cultural outcomes for residents. The Tjuntjuntjara community has existed on the western extent of the nature reserve since at least 1988 but has never had a registrable interest over the area it occupies. A lack of formal tenure has previously limited the community's ability to seek investment for critically required infrastructure, while also restricting its pursuit of on-ground economic activities. The agreement follows a $23.8 million investment in improving housing, power, water and sewerage facilities at Tjuntjuntjara and the passing of the Reserves (Tjuntjuntjara Community) Act 2018. Upon registration of the agreement with the National Native Title Tribunal, the remaining provisions of the Reserves Act will be proclaimed, formalising the excision, enabling the grant of new tenure and requiring Ministerial consent and consultation with the community before any mining and petroleum exploration and recovery on the land. The native title rights of the Spinifex People were recognised over 20 years ago; the first determination of native title in Western Australia following the commencement of the operation of the Commonwealth Native Title Act 1993. Comments attributed to Lands Minister Tony Buti "Today is a very special event for the Spinifex People and the residents of Tjuntjuntjara with the signing of this agreement marking the end of a long campaign for formal acknowledgement of their community. "It paves the way for registrable tenure and removing barriers that have otherwise constrained further development of the community. "This agreement is another step forward to improving services and infrastructure, adding to the existing facilities in the community and delivering greater social and economic outcomes for Tjuntjuntjara residents." Comments attributed to Aboriginal Affairs Minister Stephen Dawson "Tjuntjuntjara is a proud community that has occupied this area for more than 30 years, steadily expanding facilities and infrastructure to complement the traditional cultural cycles of life in the Western Desert region. "However, until now, a lack of formal land tenure has limited the ability of the community to pursue economic and social activities in the community, upgrade and expand housing and critical infrastructure, and create jobs and training opportunities for residents. "Agreements such as these are a great example of how the McGowan Government is working to Close the Gap, ensuring the strong economic participation and development of Aboriginal people and their communities. "This is a great day for the Spinifex People and a resounding acknowledgement of their native title rights, and I am honoured to be part of this ceremony." Lands Minister's office - 6552 6400Aboriginal Affairs Minister's office - 6552 5800
Round 5 of Community Rivercare grants now open6922Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 4:56:47 AM2021-09-17T04:45:00Z $350,000 available for not-for-profit community volunteer groups Funding aimed at projects that improve the health of the Swan and Canning rivers $8 million invested in caring for the Swan River over the next four years The latest round of the McGowan Government's Community Rivercare Program is now open. Applications for the fifth round of the program can be made until November 12, 2021, with $350,000 of funding allocated by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions. The grants help improve habitats for native wildlife, enhance water quality and address foreshore erosion in the Swan Canning catchment. The McGowan Government is investing $8 million in community projects to protect the Swan River, including expanding the successful Dolphin Watch program, the Plastic Free Riverpark initiative, and urban forest initiatives to maintain and improve tree canopy. Since 2018-19, 29 not-for-profit community volunteer groups have so far shared in over $1 million under the Community Rivercare Program. Previous successful projects include Revegetation of a threatened ecological community by Friends of Maylands Samphires; Weed control at Success Hill Reserve by Friends of Success Hill Reserve; Foreshore revegetation and weed control by Friends of Berringa Park Wetlands; Rehabilitation of the Canning River near the Harry Hunter Rehabilitation Centre by Armadale Gosnells Landcare Group; Blackadder Creek foreshore revegetation and habitat improvement by Blackadder Woodbridge Catchment Group; Eradication of morning glory and other noxious weeds by Friends of Flooded Gum; Continuing the restoration of Bennett Brook Community Rivercare sites by Friends of Bennett Brook; Heritage Trail Mount Helena waterway and riparian rehabilitation by Friends of Pioneer Park; Wright Brook catchment restoration by Armadale Gosnells Landcare Group; Rocky Creek and Lower Yalyal rehabilitation by Ellen Brockman Integrated Catchment Group; Restoration of Astley River Park by Armadale Gosnells Landcare Group. More information on the program can be found at https//pws.dbca.wa.gov.au/rivercare Comments attributed to Environment Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson "Community groups and volunteers continue to be integral to keeping the Swan and Canning river catchments healthy, and the McGowan Government will continue to support them through the Community Rivercare Program. "These grants complement a range of initiatives to protect the Swan River, with the McGowan Government investing $8 million to preserve this iconic environment. "I encourage not-for-profit groups to apply for these grants to help keep the Swan and Canning river catchments clean and healthy so together we can continue this important work." Minister's office - 6552 5900
Record number of emergency service fuel cards help power volunteering efforts6921Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 4:08:03 AM2021-09-17T04:05:00Z 870 volunteer groups across Western Australia to benefit from $1000 fuel cards Fuel cards will be distributed from this week A record number of emergency service volunteer brigades, groups and units will be rewarded for their service this year with an emergency services fuel card. From this week, 870 cards preloaded with $1,000 will be sent out across the State to volunteer groups. The State Government's Emergency Services Volunteer Fuel Card Scheme is now in its seventh year, and aids volunteers with their travel and transport expenses. The card is available to volunteer firefighting, State Emergency Service, Marine Rescue and St John Ambulance brigades, groups and units. Regional volunteer groups are set to receive 788 of the cards which assist emergency services personnel who may need to travel long distances in personal vehicles. The process has been streamlined so eligible volunteers no longer need to make applications for the cards, which will be automatically issued. For more information about volunteering, visit http//www.dfes.wa.gov.au/volunteering Comments attributed to Emergency Services Minister Reece Whitby "It is wonderful to see a record number of brigades, groups and units accessing the Volunteer Fuel Card Scheme this financial year. "From speaking with volunteers, I know they are driven by a desire to help the community, but these cards will provide some assistance as they go about their duties. "These volunteers play a vital role in protecting the community, and this is a symbol of thanks from the State Government in recognition of their hard work." Minister's office - 6552 6300 ​
Vaccination made easier for WA school students and staff6907Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 4:05:46 AM2021-09-17T04:00:00Z Rolling school-based vaccination program to begin week 1 of term 4 WA Health has arranged designated walk-in time slots at COVID-19 vaccination clinics for senior secondary students aged 16 and above from next week Access will also be available for school staff to walk in and get vaccinated Move to make it easier for students, staff to get vaccinated Western Australian secondary students aged 16 and older will be able to walk in to designated State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics from next week, while from the start of Term 4 the roll-out of a school-based vaccination program will commence. The rolling school-based vaccination program for students 12 and above and school staff will begin at around 20 schools across WA next month. Priority schools will include residential, agricultural and boarding colleges, as well as education support settings. This is in addition to existing appointment-based vaccinations available now in Community Vaccination Centres (CVC) and GPs and is part of a multi-faceted approach to provide as many opportunities as possible for young people to get vaccinated. From next week, the roll-out at CVCs will begin in Joondalup and Claremont; designated times will be available for walk-in opportunities outside of school hours for students aged 16 and above - many of whom are in Year 11 and 12. During the school holidays, walk-in opportunities will be available at clinics in Midland, Kwinana and the city centre, as well as Joondalup and Claremont. School staff are also able to access the dedicated vaccination slots without an appointment after school hours and during the school holidays. The metropolitan clinics at Joondalup, Midland, Kwinana, CBD and Claremont are conveniently located near public transport and shopping centres. Regional clinics will also offer walk-in opportunities for senior students and school staff in Coolgardie, Esperance, Kalgoorlie, Kambalda, Leonora, Norseman, Bunbury, Derby, Kununurra, Carnarvon and Geraldton. Further regional locations will be added soon. Children in remote communities will be offered vaccinations as part of a broader community outreach vaccination program co-ordinated by WA Country Health Service. WA Health State COVID-19 vaccination clinics are available in more than 100 locations across WA, with locations listed on the HealthyWA website. A range of GPs and GP respiratory clinics will also be able to provide the vaccine to children aged 12 years and older. Visit http//www.rollup.wa.gov.au for more information about COVID-19 vaccines. Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "If you are eligible, I urge you to get the COVID-19 vaccine now. "Senior secondary students aged 16 and older and school staff should get along to one of the walk-in clinics as soon as you get the chance. "It takes hardly any time and is a great opportunity for you to roll up your sleeve and help keep WA safe. "With the new Vaccine Commander on board, we will continue to explore all options to ensure we can get as many Western Australians vaccinated as soon as possible." Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "I'm sure many parents of senior secondary students will be pleased that their teens can get vaccinated in one of the walk-in clinics. "Parents and guardians also have the option of booking appointments using http//www.rollup.wa.gov.au or with a primary care provider. "There are great opportunities for all Western Australians aged over 12 to now get vaccinated - this is an important conversation for families to have with their children and teenagers." Comments attributed to Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery "There are a number of additional ways students and school staff can now get vaccinated if they are unable to book an appointment and attend one of the existing clinics. "I would encourage all eligible students and school staff to get vaccinated as soon as possible and play their part in helping protect the West Australian community. "This is a busy period for our school students and staff but, as we draw to the end of this term, there is a greater opportunity for eligible people from our schools to get vaccinated." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Health Minister's office - 6552 6500 Education and Training Minister's office - 6552 5700
Tom Price COVID-19 vaccination clinic starts6906Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 2:09:07 AM2021-09-17T02:05:00Z Tom Price COVID-19 vaccination clinic opened Clinic will operate from 9am-6pm at the Tom Price Community Centre from September 17 to 21 More than 2 million COVID-19 vaccinations have been administered across the StateHealth Minister Roger Cook today opened the Tom Price COVID-19 vaccination clinic to boost vaccination rates in the Pilbara. The Tom Price clinic, along with another clinic in Paraburdoo, is a joint initiative of the McGowan Government, WA Country Health Service, miner Rio Tinto and the Shire of Ashburton. The initiative is designed to improve access to vaccination for people in Tom Price and Paraburdoo, surrounding Aboriginal communities, and for Rio Tinto workers and their families. People are encouraged to book an appointment via http//www.rollup.wa.gov.au and walk-ins are also welcome. The Tom Price Community Vaccination Clinic will run from September 17 to 21 at Tom Price Community Centre, Central Road. The clinic will be open from 9am to 6pm. The Paraburdoo Community Vaccination Clinic will open for one day, September 23, at Ashburton Hall, Ashburton Avenue. The clinic will be open from 9am to 6pm. There have been more than two million vaccinations administered to Western Australians across the State. State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics are available in more than 100 locations across WA, with locations listed on the HealthyWA website. Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "It is great to be in Tom Price today at the opening of the COVID-19 vaccination clinic, which is the first of two Pilbara clinics to boost vaccination rates in the Pilbara. "More than 60 per cent of Western Australians have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine but we want to continue to get as many Western Australians vaccinated as possible. "I'm proud of this partnership between the McGowan Government and Rio Tinto to vaccinate people in regional WA - and we look forward to working with more resources companies in future to help keep WA safe." Comments attributed to Mining and Pastoral Region MLC Peter Foster "As a Tom Price local, I'd really encourage everyone to roll up for WA; especially our local Aboriginal community. "It's so important that we do everything we can to protect everyone we love - our family and friends." Minister's office - 6552 6500
Funding to revitalise Southern Rangelands pastoral businesses6890Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 2:04:08 AM2021-09-17T02:00:00Z Expressions of Interest open to fund future rangeland revitalisation McGowan Government support for enhancing land condition, while improving livestock productivity and profitability Expressions of Interest are now open for pastoralists to access training and expertise to rejuvenate land condition and station enterprises, as part of the McGowan Government's $550,000 Southern Rangelands Revitalisation Pilot Project. Funds are available to help land managers investigate and tailor long term solutions into a revitalisation roadmap for each participating pastoral station. The McGowan Government is supporting southern pastoralists' endeavours to improve regeneration of productive perennial vegetation, lift landscape health, relieve grazing pressure and refine management of livestock productivity drivers. Pastoralists involved in the pilot will draw on the experience and knowledge of others and work together on common issues, which will be shared with peers in the pastoral community. The next phase of the project will focus on implementing the revitalisation plans, demonstrating different approaches and systems and sharing the learnings with the wider industry. This project is one of several McGowan Government investments to assist Western Australia's primary industries to adapt to climate change and build business resilience, alongside the WA Carbon Farming and Land Restoration Program, Agriculture Climate Resilience Fund and the WaterSmart Farms project. For more information and to submit an Expression of Interest in the Southern Rangelands Revitalisation Project phase one funding visit agric.wa.gov.au/southernrangelands. Comments attributed to Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan "This project will provide southern pastoralists with access to the latest information, expertise and financial support to invest into rejuvenating rangeland condition. "It will provide a detailed pathway for pastoral businesses to capitalise on land rejuvenation opportunities - making them investment-ready for the billions of dollars available globally for carbon sequestrations. "It is important rangeland managers are equipped with the latest innovations, technologies, scientific knowledge and access to funding opportunities to protect and improve WA's valuable natural assets, as well as improve the productivity and profitability of their businesses." Minister's office - 6552 6200
Aboriginal Procurement Policy expands to include employment and subbie targets6889Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml17/09/2021 12:51:24 AM2021-09-16T23:30:00Z Aboriginal Procurement Policy strengthened New requirements to come into effect from January 1, 2022 Updates build on Aboriginal Procurement Policy introduced in 2018 Policy aims to build capacity and capability of Aboriginal businesses in WA The McGowan Government is updating its Aboriginal Procurement Policy to include Aboriginal employment targets for the first time. It is also broadening the policy, which currently prescribes targets for percentage of government contracts to be awarded to Aboriginal businesses, to include spend targets for Aboriginal subcontracting on government projects. The updates mean suppliers will have a contractual obligation to meet an Aboriginal employment target or an Aboriginal subcontracting target from January 1, 2022. The Aboriginal employment targets are based on region by region demographics and are measured as a percentage of the total contract workforce 10 per cent for Pilbara and Kimberley; 5 per cent for Gascoyne, Mid-West and Goldfields-Esperance; 2 per cent for Perth metropolitan area, South-West, Great Southern, Peel and Wheatbelt. The subcontracting targets will reflect current Aboriginal procurement targets - measured as a percentage of total contract value - and will increase from 3 per cent in 2021-22, to 3.5 per cent in 2022-23 and 4 percent in 2023-24. The new requirements will apply to goods, services, and works contracts valued at $5 million and above advertised from 1 January 2022 within the industries of construction, community services, education and training, and public administration and finance. It will also apply to contracts valued at $5 million and above where services will be delivered predominantly to Aboriginal people or target the specific needs of Aboriginal people. Comments attributed to Finance Minister Tony Buti "The State Government has significant employing and purchasing power, as demonstrated by the McGowan Government's ongoing investment in transport infrastructure, schools, health and housing. "The intent of the Aboriginal Procurement Policy is to ensure we can build the capacity of Aboriginal businesses in WA so that opportunities get bigger over time. "We are already seeing some government agencies, such as Main Roads, exceeding Aboriginal procurement targets on some of their projects and achieving great outcomes. "I look forward to watching the continued growth of this sector in WA, and the wider benefits that stem from working with the local Aboriginal business sector." Comments attributed to Aboriginal Affairs Minister Stephen Dawson "The State Government's Aboriginal Procurement Policy has been tried and tested, and proven to have a positive impact on Aboriginal businesses around Western Australia. "I welcome any initiative that helps support the growth of the Aboriginal business sector and increases the level of contracting between government departments and Aboriginal businesses. "Employment targets are a great next step for the procurement policy and I look forward to it delivering real jobs on the ground for Aboriginal people. "I encourage Aboriginal businesses to engage with this policy to find out how they can benefit from State Government procurement opportunities into the future." Minister's office - 6552 6400 ​
Kwinana COVID-19 vaccination clinic for Aboriginal families6887Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4160html16/09/2021 8:18:37 AM2021-09-16T08:00:00Z Two COVID-19 vaccination events to help protect Aboriginal people No appointments needed Two targeted COVID-19 vaccination events in Kwinana this week will support Aboriginal people to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Both initiatives are designed to improve access to vaccination for Aboriginal families in Perth's southern corridor. Aboriginal people and those with underlying health conditions are most at risk of severe illness and dying from COVID-19. Large and extended families living together are also at greatest risk from the spread of any infectious disease. Tomorrow (September 17), the Moorditj Djena Aboriginal podiatry and diabetes van will be converted into a COVID-19 vaccination van at the NAIDOC event in Kwinana. No appointments are needed. Aboriginal children, teens 12 years and older and adults will be able to get a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination and are encouraged to visit staff at the van outside the Darius Wells Library and Resource Centre from 10.30am to 1.30pm. On Sunday, September 19, an Aboriginal Family Day will be held at the Kwinana Vaccination Clinic, Kwinana Supa Centre, Meares Road, Kwinana Town Centre (next to Repco). All Aboriginal people aged 12 years and above will be able to get a Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination on a 'walk-in' basis from 9am to 3.30pm. No bookings will be required. The family day, run in conjunction with Moorditj Koort, the Aboriginal Health Council of WA, Lions Club of Kwinana and with support from the City of Kwinana, will include a sausage sizzle, coffees, food van and other giveaways for the first 100 people vaccinated. State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics are available in more than 100 locations across Western Australia, with locations listed on the HealthyWA website. A range of GPs, GP respiratory clinics, pharmacies and Aboriginal Medical Services can also provide the COVID-19 vaccine. More than two million vaccinations have been administered to Western Australians across the State. About 60 per cent of WA's eligible population has had at least one vaccine dose. Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "I cannot stress enough how important it is for everyone to get vaccinated, but I especially encourage Aboriginal people to take advantage of this opportunity. "If we need any reminders of the risks we need only look to western NSW where at least three Aboriginal people have tragically died from COVID-19 with Aboriginal people making up most of the confirmed cases. "I don't want that to happen here. Roll up and get vaccinated. Protect yourself, your family and your friends. "More of these initiatives are being planned for the future." Minister's office - 6552 6500
Pfizer bookings for people aged 60 and over brought forward6718Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements15270html16/09/2021 7:45:24 AM2021-09-16T07:40:00Z On Tuesday, the State Government announced an expansion of eligibility for Pfizer COVID-19 vaccinations to Western Australians aged 60 years and above which was due to commence next week Due to more supply and availability, bookings will now open tomorrow (September 17) More than 50,000 appointments have been made available for a COVID-19 vaccine in the next six weeks Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination bookings for Western Australians aged 60 years and above have now been brought forward to begin from tomorrow (September 17). From tomorrow, people in this age group can visit http//www.rollup.wa.gov.au to register and book an appointment at a State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinic. This important initiative, aimed at getting the remaining people aged 60 years and over fully vaccinated, is starting earlier than initially planned due to available appointments and additional capacity in the system. There are currently 50,000 appointments available across WA Health State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics within the next six weeks. These appointments are open to all Western Australians aged 12 and above who can visit http//www.rollup.wa.gov.au to register and book an appointment at a State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinic. There are WA Health State-run COVID-19 vaccination clinics in more than 100 locations across Western Australia, with sites listed on the HealthyWA website. In line with the national health advice from the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation, people aged 60 years or older who have already had a first dose of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine should have their second dose of the AstraZeneca. People who wish to be vaccinated at their GP or pharmacist should speak to them directly about vaccine availability and bookings, with the Commonwealth also now approving the use of Pfizer for people aged 60 and over via GP clinics. Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "I encourage all Western Australians aged 12 years and over to roll up and get vaccinated. "Vaccination is the best protection we have against COVID-19 and will ensure that people are protected from the risk of serious illness or death associated with the virus. "More than 90 per cent of people aged over 70 have now had one dose and more than 70 per cent are fully vaccinated. "We want to see more people aged in their 60s getting vaccinated. The rate for them is at 80 per cent first dose and just over 50 per cent fully vaccinated. "Now that we have more availability there is no excuse to delay your decision to get vaccinated if you are eligible." Minister's office - 6552 6500
Asymptomatic COVID-19 testing program extended to taxi and ride share drivers6717Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6480html16/09/2021 7:03:14 AM2021-09-16T07:00:00Z State's COVID-19 testing program bolstered by expansion of voluntary testing for at-risk workers Complements mandatory testing program for high risk workersTaxi and ride share drivers with no symptoms of COVID-19 are now eligible for free, regular COVID-19 testing as part of Western Australia's enhanced DETECT Borders surveillance program. The voluntary testing is available as often as weekly at any public COVID-19 testing clinic. The DETECT program commenced on September 11, 2020, as part of the extensive range of measures designed to prevent transmission of COVID-19 into the State. It has now been expanded to taxi drivers and ride share drivers who often transport domestic travellers, to offer them peace of mind and bolster our surveillance measures. The testing aims to swiftly detect any COVID-19 cases as soon as possible to limit onward transmission. DETECT Borders asymptomatic testing remains available to Perth domestic airport workers, sea port workers, and those employed at the Eucla or Kununurra border crossings who have close contact with arrivals. People who fit the criteria for asymptomatic testing can resume normal activities immediately and will be informed of a negative result via SMS. Anyone who tests positive will be followed up in line with existing Public Health procedures. Any other community member who has symptoms of COVID-19, even if mild, is encouraged to get tested so we can catch cases before they spread. For details of clinics and opening hours, visit http//www.healthywa.wa.gov.au/Coronavirus Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "Early detection of COVID-19 before it has a chance to transmit in the community is essential to protecting Western Australians from the virus and maintaining our personal freedoms. "We have a range of appropriate, considered measures in place for various settings according to risk and, given the interaction of ride share and taxi drivers with travellers, it is appropriate that they be included in the DETECT Borders program. "This is a voluntary program which offers greater value if more people participate, so I would ask that anyone who is eligible takes the opportunity for regular testing. "We must maintain our vigilance around surveillance, particularly now that we face more contagious variants of COVID-19, so please do not get complacent and I'd encourage you to get tested if you are sick or eligible for asymptomatic testing." Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "Taxi and ride share drivers play a key role in transporting passengers all around Western Australia. "I am really pleased this testing has been expanded to include taxi drivers and ride share drivers, giving both drivers and passengers greater peace of mind. "I encourage the industry to take advantage of this voluntary opportunity." Health Minister's office - 6552 6500Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500
Full Cycle Docking decision fails WA6715Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements15860html16/09/2021 6:31:40 AM2021-09-16T06:25:00Z Federal Government's decision snubs WA Western Australia made a superior case to secure program Independent studies demonstrated WA's superior capacity to take on the work Commonwealth fails to provide certainty on continuous shipbuilding in WA $89.3 million of upgrades underway at Henderson's Australian Marine Complex, which have been agreed to and supported by Defence The McGowan Labor Government has called upon the Commonwealth to deliver its commitment to establish and support two national shipbuilding hubs, and to provide the same level of certainty that has been provided to South Australia. The Federal Government's decision to keep Australia's submarine maintenance work in South Australia - despite WA making a superior case in the national interest to take on the multibillion-dollar program - represents further uncertainty to WA's local industry. The submarine fleet and submariners are already based at Garden Island, and two independent studies demonstrated Western Australia's advantages over South Australia to run the program. Henderson's Australian Marine Complex already had the capacity to accommodate the work, with the McGowan Government further bolstering its capability with an $89.3 million investment to make additional improvements to the defence industry hub. In addition to the submarine maintenance work, South Australia has been awarded a $5.1 billion project to upgrade Air Warfare Destroyers combat systems. Western Australia's world-leading resources industry gives WA unmatched capability among other States to undertake defence projects, with the two sectors having considerable similarities. The McGowan Government is now calling upon the Commonwealth to allocate a significant proportion of the $270 billion program of defence work announced as part of the 2020 Force Structure Plan to Western Australia. Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "This decision does not recognise WA's innate industrial strength and shipbuilding capability. "The Federal Liberals and Nationals have turned their back on WA. "This is a decision that favours the Eastern States and flies in the face of Western Australia's strong case to secure the Full Cycle Docking program. "While we are extremely disappointed, we know that Western Australia's superior capability to undertake job-creating defence projects at Henderson remains. "We have the industry expertise, the infrastructure and the capability to accommodate a much larger share of Australia's defence industry work. "I call upon the Federal Government to allocate a significant proportion of its upcoming multibillion-dollar program of works to WA - to rightly acknowledge the capacity of our industry, support WA jobs and serve the national interest." Comments attributed to Defence Industry Minister Paul Papalia "The Commonwealth has chosen to back South Australia and snub Western Australia, ignoring the national interest in the process. "Western Australia's defence industry has every right to be deeply aggrieved. "WA industry and the State Government engaged in a two-and-a-half-year process in good faith only to find that the Federal Government was never genuine." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Defence Industry Minister's office - 6552 5600
New memorial area to commemorate police officers and staff who have died while serving5537Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5010html16/09/2021 2:43:40 AM2021-09-16T02:30:00Z 36 plaques to be added to memorial area in dedication ceremony Honouring the duty of police officers and staff of the WA Police Force A new memorial area has been unveiled to honour police officers and staff who have lost their lives while serving the WA Police Force. Police Minister Paul Papalia and Commissioner of Police Chris Dawson today joined friends and families at a dedication ceremony for the new area, located in the chapel gardens of the Joondalup Police Academy. The current wall of remembrance displays the names of WA Police Force Officers who were killed in the line of duty. The new memorial area ensures those who have died, not necessarily in the line of duty, but in other circumstances while working for the agency are also recognised. Today 36 plaques containing the names of Superintendents, Inspectors, Sergeants, Detectives, Constables and a police staff member were proudly displayed at the memorial. Comments attributed to Police Minister Paul Papalia "This new memorial area has been created to commemorate both police officers and police staff who have died while being serving employees of the WA Police Force. "Not only will it give recognition of their service, but it will provide an area for their family and friends to share in the memory of their loved one. "We thank all our police officers and staff for their commitment to the community of Western Australia. "I hope this memorial area provides some peace and solace for anyone from our police family who needs time to heal, reminisce or just sit and reflect." Minister's office - 6552 5600
McGowan Government moves to stamp out sly grogging in the Kimberley5536Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements7160html16/09/2021 1:01:29 AM2021-09-16T01:00:00Z New regulations to combat the practice of sly grogging will come into effect this week Limits will apply to the amount of alcohol that can be carried in a vehicle Police will have the discretion to seize and dispose of alcohol on the spot McGowan Government committed to minimising alcohol-related harm in the community and protecting the vulnerable WA Police will have the discretion to seize and dispose of illegal alcohol on the spot under new regulations to stamp out sly grogging in regional and remote communities. The regulations, which will come into effect in the Kimberley this week, aim to reduce alcohol-related harm and crack down on those who prey on the vulnerable by illegally selling large quantities of alcohol at inflated prices. From Saturday (September 18), restrictions will apply under a new section of the Liquor Control Act, limiting the quantity and types of liquor that can be legally transported in a vehicle. The carriage limits will reflect the liquor restrictions that are currently in place in the Kimberley under the Emergency Management Act. They include one carton of beer, cider or pre-mixed spirits; or three bottles of wine; or one litre of spirits or fortified wine; or a combination of two products per adult in the vehicle, per day. Vehicles that carry more than five passengers will only be permitted to carry quantities of alcohol for five people. WA Police will have the discretion when they stop and search a vehicle to immediately dispose of illegal alcohol. The carriage limits will apply in the towns of Broome, Derby, Fitzroy Crossing, Halls Creek, Kununurra and Wyndham, and within 20 kilometres of those towns. The limits will also apply within five kilometres of dry Aboriginal communities. Anyone found to be in breach of these regulations faces a maximum fine of $10,000. Exemptions apply to tourists, pastoralists, station owners and operators of remote work sites. The State Government has consulted widely with liquor industry associations and public health bodies, in developing the legislative amendments. Comments attributed to Racing and Gaming Minister Reece Whitby "Sly grogging is a significant issue in regional and remote communities, and these regulations are just one way the McGowan Government is tackling alcohol-related harm. "Police will now have the discretion to seize and dispose of illegal alcohol on the spot, and I hope this will be a deterrent for members of the community who prey on the vulnerable - and profit off them. "Alcohol abuse is a long-standing issue in the community and there is no easy fix, however, the State Government is committed to doing what it can to minimise the devastation caused by sly grogging." Comments attributed to Kimberley MLA Divina D'Anna "These amendments will target the people engaging in 'sly grogging' - those who are exploiting vulnerable members of the community by illegally selling liquor to them at inflated prices. "The social and physical impacts of sly grogging, particularly in remote communities, has devastating impacts and I am pleased to see this important initiative implemented." Minister's office - 6552 6300
Minderoo research lab completes Exmouth’s Ningaloo Centre5535Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements7940html15/09/2021 8:34:48 AM2021-09-15T08:30:00Z World-class oceans research laboratory opens at the State-funded Exmouth Ningaloo Centre Successful State partnerships resolve legacy issues at Ningaloo Centre Laboratory helping to attract highly skilled workforce to the Gascoyne The Minderoo Exmouth Research Laboratory has been officially opened today, putting the Gascoyne at the cutting-edge of global oceans research and completing the State-funded Exmouth Ningaloo Centre. The State Government invested $22 million to develop the Exmouth Ningaloo Centre, and since 2017 the McGowan Government has worked closely with the Shire of Exmouth and Minderoo Foundation to ensure the centre met its full potential. Most recently, the McGowan Government provided $320,000 to support installation of a solar energy system at the Ningaloo Centre, which will account for more than 60 per cent of the centre and laboratory's energy needs. The Minderoo Exmouth Research Laboratory will play a key role in driving the local economy, attracting highly skilled researchers and operational staff to the Gascoyne region. Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan "With support from the McGowan Government, it's great to finally see the Ningaloo Centre completed with the opening of the Exmouth Minderoo Research Lab. "This lab is an important asset in Exmouth's emerging 'blue economy' and plays a critical role in supporting economic diversification in the community. "Minderoo Foundation's commitment to marine conservation represents an extraordinary philanthropic and scientific contribution to the planet's health. "We commend the Shire of Exmouth and Minderoo Foundation for their hard work and collaboration in bringing the lab to life and putting the Gascoyne front-and-centre in global marine conservation research." Minister's office - 6552 6200
Joint media statement - Contract awarded for boat ramp at Onslow Community Boating Precinct5534Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6720html15/09/2021 7:07:25 AM2021-09-15T07:00:00Z Work will start in October on Stage 1 of upgrades at the Onslow Community Boating Precinct. A $9.2 million contract for stage one works has been awarded to WA based company Ertech. A new two-lane boat launching ramp will be constructed with a central floating jetty located 150 metres north of the current facility at the Beadon Creek (Onslow) Maritime Facility. Works also include initial dredging to create deeper waters for safe navigation to and from the ramp, earthworks to form the ramp and construction of several rock revetment walls. The current ramp will remain in use during work with the new ramp expected to open by mid-2022. This project is funded by the Shire of Ashburton ($7.9 million), the Commonwealth Recreational Fishing and Camping Facilities Program ($0.9 million) and the State Government ($0.4 million), with the project being delivered by the Department of Transport. Comments attributed to Senator the Hon. Jonno Duniam "Recreational fishing is an important leisure activity that contributes economic and social benefits to the Australian community, and is a part of the Australian way of life for all ages and for all socio-economic backgrounds. "Improving facilities and access to recreational fishing, boating and camping areas will provide locals and visitors alike with better opportunities to enjoy the great outdoors by camping and fishing in our rivers and at the coast." Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "This is an exciting project for Onslow, made possible by a major funding commitment from the Shire of Ashburton that will create modern new boating facilities while supporting local jobs. "The Pilbara region has a high recreational boat ownership rate of 70 vessels per 1,000 people, and this project will provide new boating facilities for both local and visiting boaties as more people choose to holiday at home in WA. "In addition to social and recreational benefits, the project will provide an economic boost for the local community, supporting local jobs and the local economy with 60 per cent of the contract expenditure in regional WA, and 99 per cent to be spent on WA content." Comments attributed to Mining and Pastoral Region MLC Peter Foster "Onslow is a beautiful place to visit and enjoy the water. "When complete this project will provide more opportunities for residents and tourists to get out and enjoy the Pilbara. "I am also pleased local businesses are encouraged to offer their services to the successful contractor with the assistance and support of the Onslow Chamber of Commerce and Industry." WA Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500
Kimberley cotton gin one step closer to reality5533Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements10990html15/09/2021 5:03:47 AM2021-09-15T05:00:00Z Sustainable cotton industry in Kununurra one step closer, with Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility funding confirmed McGowan Government laid the foundations for the facility with $4 million funding package Cotton gin could support more than 1,000 local jobs in first 10 yearsThe McGowan Government has welcomed a significant milestone towards establishing a viable cotton industry in the State's north, with the Kimberley Cotton Company securing funds to progress towards construction of a cotton processing facility in Kununurra. The Commonwealth's Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) board has approved a $32 million loan to the Kimberley Cotton Company to construct Stage One of a cotton gin. The cotton gin is central to the development of a sustainable cotton industry in the north - with raw cotton otherwise having to be transported interstate for processing - providing the impetus for growers to increase production to provide the scale and efficiencies for a profitable industry. The McGowan Government has long supported the initiative, providing land for the facility and $4 million towards a clean and reliable power supply and to assist the development of a business model, preliminary design work and approvals. The State is continuing to work with growers to secure the necessary approvals for farmland that will support the development of the cotton industry in the Ord River Irrigation Area. A recent study has shown a new cotton gin could create more than 1,000 direct and indirect local jobs in its first 10 years, generating $1.19 billion in cotton lint exports and flow-on value adding benefits from the cotton seed by-product as a livestock feed. Comments attributed to Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan "The NAIF loan will build on the sound foundations laid by the Kimberley Cotton Company and the McGowan Government, spurring growers on to increase production so the gin can achieve the scale required for viability. "Our government has underpinned this initiative with a reliable, efficient clean power supply for the Kimberley cotton gin, using hydroelectricity with zero carbon emissions - increasing business competitiveness and satisfying increasingly discerning global market requirements. "I commend the Kimberley Cotton Company for their tremendous leadership, tenacity and vision in being able to work together to create enduring job opportunities and flow-on benefits for the East Kimberley community." Minister's office - 6552 6200
Record year for The Perth Mint in 2020-215531Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements7250html15/09/2021 4:58:42 AM2021-09-15T04:30:00Z Record global demand for The Perth Mint's precious metals in 2020-21 187 jobs created, $41 million returned to Western Australians via tax payments and dividends The Perth Mint is WA's third largest exporter behind BHP and Rio Tinto The Perth Mint has reported a record 2020-21 financial year with an underlying pre-tax profit of $56 million on turnover of $26.35 billion. This is a record for The Perth Mint's 122-year history and cements the East Perth institution as one of Western Australia's largest exporters of gold and silver. The Perth Mint has delivered a further $41 million in taxes and dividends to the State Government for the 2020-21 financial year, taking the total paid to Western Australians to more than $230 million over the past decade. The Perth Mint refines the vast bulk of newly mined gold from across Australia, transforming it into cast bullion bars and minted precious metal products for sale to investors worldwide. As WA's mining industry was able to continue operating uninterrupted last year, during the COVID-19 pandemic, The Perth Mint was able to expand its operations creating 187 new jobs. Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston tabled the Gold Corporation's annual report in Parliament today. To view the report, visit https//www.perthmint.com Comments attributed to Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston "This is an outstanding result delivered by The Perth Mint and a credit to the more than 500 staff who have cemented the organisation's status as a global leader in precious metals. "The Perth Mint has exported Western Australian gold to the world for more than a century in a safe, efficient and sustainable manner. "It has also become one of the State's leading employers and a top three exporter." Comments attributed to The Perth Mint CEO Richard Hayes "Our record-breaking performance in 2020-21 was a credit to The Perth Mint's highly professional team who have risen to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. "The past financial year has been one of the most challenging the world has faced in many decades - but it also delivered unprecedented opportunities to further build The Perth Mint's reach and reputation across the globe." Minister's office - 6552 6700
Electoral Equality Bill introduced into State Parliament5530Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements22870html15/09/2021 4:15:59 AM2021-09-15T04:15:00Z Final Report on Electoral Reform from the independent Expert Panel tabled in Parliament Constitutional and Electoral Legislation Amendment (Electoral Equality) Bill 2021 introduced Legislative Council to become a whole State electorate with 37 Members Group Voting Tickets to be abolished and optional preferential voting introduced Every vote for Legislative Council candidates will carry equal weight in a single, State-wide electorate under historic reforms introduced to State Parliament to improve fairness in Western Australia's voting system. The democratic reforms of WA's electoral laws will also do away with 'preference harvesting' using Group Voting Tickets, which enabled secret preference deals that allowed a minor party candidate to be elected on just 98 primary votes at this year's State election. The reforms are based on the recommendations of the Final Report by the independent Ministerial Expert Committee on Electoral Reform, which has been tabled in Parliament. The report was compiled by an independent expert advisory panel led by Malcolm McCusker AC CVO QC, who was Western Australia's 31st Governor, along with three eminent electoral and constitutional law experts Professor John Phillimore, Professor Sarah Murray and Professor Martin Drum. Under the Constitutional and Electoral Legislation Amendment (Electoral Equality) Bill 2021, WA will join other States and the Commonwealth in abolishing Group Voting Tickets and introducing optional preferential voting, to diminish the impact of secret preference deals. This will give electors the choice of selecting one or more parties above the line or as many candidates as they choose, subject to a minimum of 20, below the line. In one region at the last election, electors had to vote for all 64 candidates if they chose to vote below the line on the ballot paper. The report's primary recommendation and the key provision in the Bill is to abolish the three metropolitan and three non-metropolitan regions in favour of a single electorate comprising the entire State, as exists in the New South Wales and South Australian Legislative Councils. It also mirrors the Senate, where WA is one electorate which elects 'Senators for Western Australia', not for a particular district or region. Currently in WA, the six regions each return six Legislative Councillors, despite having wildly different populations. The independent Ministerial Expert Committee found the best way to overcome this unfair vote weighting, which gives some electors more than six times the say of their fellow Western Australians, was to implement a single State-wide electorate. Under the whole State electorate, regional representation is enhanced with 37 Legislative Councillors representing the whole State. Parties and candidates could locate their electorate offices wherever they choose across the State and additional resourcing for regional members of Parliament will remain. This will give the President, like the Speaker of the 59-seat Legislative Assembly, a meaningful casting vote. The Ministerial Expert Committee report is available at http//www.waelectoralreform.wa.gov.au Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan "The March 2021 State election clearly demonstrated that the current system was outdated, broken and not operating in the best interests of democracy. "The Group Voting Tickets system in the WA Legislative Council has been roundly criticised. "In addition, the Council currently is the most undemocratic of any State or Territory in Australia. It lags behind most parliaments in the developed world. "I thank the members of the independent expert panel for thoroughly reviewing the electoral system for the Legislative Council, and to everyone who had their say by making a submission on this important reform." Comments attributed to Electoral Affairs Minister John Quigley "Equality is the cornerstone of democracy and in modern Western Australia everybody's vote should carry the same weight regardless of where they live. "At the last election for the Legislative Council, a vote in Kalgoorlie was worth three and a half times a vote in Albany. A vote in Wundowie was worth four times more than a vote in Wooroloo, just nine kilometres away. "WA has previously phased out enhanced voting rights based on land ownership, race, gender and wealth. This is the necessary next step to bring about full voting equality. "It is similarly beyond time to end the practice of 'preference harvesting' in WA. The community was rightly dumbfounded this year when one Legislative Councillor was elected on 98 votes while 27,000 votes could not secure a seat elsewhere. "These are sensible and proportionate reforms which will enhance the franchise of all Western Australians and adopt electoral best practice from interstate and overseas." Premier's office - 6552 5000 Electoral Affairs Minister's office - 6552 6800
Final Stage 1 lots released at Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct5528Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements9890html15/09/2021 2:33:42 AM2021-09-15T02:30:00Z Lots 120 and 121 released to market at Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct Final lots in Stage 1 offer mixed-use development sites, suitable for health, residential, technology and education Development close to quality public transport links and within major employment hub Two more lots within the Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct (MHKP) have now been released to market - the last available as part of the development's first stage. The McGowan Government is seeking offers from developers for the mixed-use sites, Lots 120 and 121, located within the South Street Precinct. The 2,370sqm Lot 120 and 2,335sqm Lot 121 are being sold via a six-week Offers Invited campaign managed by DevelopmentWA - either as a separate or grouped purchase. The lots are suitable for health, residential, technology or education uses, and are within walking distance of Fiona Stanley Hospital, Murdoch University and the Murdoch train and bus interchange. They are also near Western Australia's first Medihotel, which is being developed as part of Stage 1A at MHKP. Construction is underway in stage 1A, which will accommodate aged care and childcare facilities; hotel, retail, office and residential buildings; medical centres and mental health facilities. DevelopmentWA's 9.6-hectare MHKP will ultimately be home to 1,200 dwellings for 2,400 residents, as well as 45,000sqm of health, retail and commercial space. The precinct is part of the broader Murdoch Activity Centre, which is expected to be an employment centre of up to 35,000 jobs, include homes for 22,000 residents, and facilities for up to 44,000 students. Offers for Lots 120 and 121 at MHKP close at 2pm on October 26, 2021. For further information, visit https//developmentwa.com.au Comments attributed to Lands Minister Tony Buti "The Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct is the start of what will be a centre of excellence for health, research, education and innovation - one that will form a thriving new city centre in our southern corridor, and create jobs for thousands of Western Australians. "The first stage of MHKP will be home to a dynamic mix of health providers, research and teaching facilities, as well as retail, residential and hospitality offerings. "The release of Lots 120 and 121 presents a final opportunity for developers to secure a presence in the first phase of this ground-breaking precinct, and be a part of an exciting new community." Comments attributed to Health Minister Roger Cook "The continued development of the Murdoch Health and Knowledge Precinct complements the McGowan Government's $1.9 billion investment in WA health and mental health services. "I expect this broader health precinct will help set a new benchmark for the way sub-acute care is delivered by providing a greater range of services to match individual patient needs." Lands Minister's office - 6552 6400 Health Minister's office - 6552 6500