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New chairperson appointed to lead heritage matters3842Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml22/01/2020 7:02:46 AM2020-01-22T07:00:00Z Hon John Cowdell AM appointed Heritage Council of Western Australia chairperson New member, Professor Erika Techera completes Council appointments Board expertise set to complement new Act and support State's commitment to heritage Former President of the Legislative Council of Western Australia and the National Trust of WA, Hon John Cowdell AM has been appointed Chairperson of the Heritage Council of Western Australia. An existing member of the Heritage Council, Mr Cowdell will lead the Council for the next three years, drawing from a long and successful career in State Parliament and his former roles as president and vice president of the National Trust of WA, and director and deputy chairperson of the Australian Council of National Trusts. Professor Erika Techera, an experienced academic specialising in heritage and environmental law, has also been appointed as a new member, further strengthening the gender balance of the board and continuing the significant contribution of the outgoing chairperson, Anne Arnold. With a specialised mix of knowledge, experience and skills in heritage and board disciplines, the Heritage Council advises the State Government on the conservation, protection and promotion of heritage and the hundreds of places listed on the State Register of Heritage Places. Comments attributed to Heritage Minister David Templeman "John brings a wealth of experience and insight into the role of chairperson. He is a long-term ambassador of heritage conservation and an advocate for the importance of heritage to the Western Australian community, as well as having substantial experience in providing leadership of high level government bodies. "I am also pleased to welcome Erika Techera to the Council, and I look forward to working closely with both John and Erika as we continue to preserve our State's past and ensuring our heritage lives on to be celebrated and enjoyed by future generations. "I thank Anne Arnold for her tireless work over 11 years of service on the Heritage Council. Anne has played a key role in achieving great outcomes for our State's varied places of heritage significance and Western Australia is a better place because of her work." Minister's office - 6552 5400
Bushfire recovery plan for western ground parrots3841Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml22/01/2020 3:15:23 AM2020-01-22T03:15:00Z Western ground parrots are critically endangered, with less than 150 in the wild Urgent recovery actions planned in response to recent bushfires Emergency recovery efforts are underway to assist Western Australia's rarest bird following recent bushfires. The last remaining wild population of western ground parrots is known to occur in Cape Arid National Park and the adjacent Nuytsland Nature Reserve on the south coast. A bushfire started in Nuytsland Nature Reserve on December 20, 2019 and was contained on January 1, 2020. It burnt through an estimated 49,000 hectares of the reserve and Cape Arid National Park, including approximately 6,000 hectares of known western ground parrot habitat. Priority actions are being undertaken by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA), in collaboration with the Friends of the Western Ground Parrot, to protect birds in the remaining habitat from introduced predators, such as foxes and feral cats, and further fire. Immediate actions include additional feral cat baiting under the department's Western Shield wildlife recovery program around core habitat areas to relieve pressure on the species from introduced predators. Additional recovery actions have been identified to secure the ground parrot population and will be planned and implemented in collaboration with partners. These include protection of remaining unburnt habitat, replacement of permanent audio recording units to determine the occupancy and abundance of the parrots, and development of a translocation strategy. Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "Despite bushfires burning through key western ground parrot habitat, the extent to which these birds were impacted was reduced thanks to the exemplary efforts of career and volunteer firefighters. "DBCA identified early that an immediate response to the fire would be critical to protect the remaining habitat from introduced predators and further fire to ensure the recovery of the species. "Although it is a complex task, DBCA is working closely with volunteers and partners, including the Friends of the Western Ground Parrot and BirdLife Australia, to conserve the small wild population." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Aboriginal Ranger Program Round 3 applications open3840Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml22/01/2020 3:02:33 AM2020-01-22T03:00:00Z $4 million available for Aboriginal organisations to train and employ rangersThe McGowan Government is providing $4 million in the latest round of funding for the $20million Aboriginal Ranger Program that is creating jobs and training opportunities across Western Australia. Expressions of interest for the third round of the Aboriginal Ranger Program are now open. Almost $16 million has already been invested in 25 projects across the State over the first two rounds of funding. Under the program, new and existing Aboriginal organisations can employ and train rangers to carry out land and sea management and tourism activities across a range of tenures in remote and regional WA. Funded projects are creating pathways for Aboriginal people to develop careers in land and sea management while also providing long-term cultural and conservation outcomes. The existing 25 projects have included biodiversity monitoring and research, traditional knowledge transfer, fire management, cultural site management, feral animal and weed management. Other examples of the projects have involved cultural awareness and immersion experiences for visitors, guided welcome to country tours for visitors, management of visitors or tourists and tourism assets, and education programs and mentoring. Details on existing programs can be found at https//www.dbca.wa.gov.au/sites/default/files/2019-09/Map%20of%20round%20two%20recipients.pdf Expressions of interest can be submitted to the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, and are open until March 27, 2020. An expression of interest application form and the Aboriginal Ranger Program guidelines are available at http//www.dbca.wa.gov.au/aboriginalrangerprogram Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "The McGowan Government has already invested almost $16 million under the first two rounds of the Aboriginal Ranger Program. This has resulted in the employment of 189 rangers, more than half of whom are women. "Valuable work has already been undertaken by successful applicants under the previous two rounds, with rangers being trained in fire management, cultural site management and biodiversity monitoring and research." Comments attributed to Aboriginal Affairs Minister Ben Wyatt "Through this significant investment, we are delivering on our promise to create jobs for Aboriginal people, helping to increase resilience, improve community wellbeing and build leadership. "The funding delivered under the program is already having positive social, cultural, economic and environmental outcomes. I encourage more groups to apply for funding in Round 3 so they can build on the growing number of Aboriginal groups and rangers managing country." Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800Aboriginal Affairs Minister's office - 6552 5900
Joint media statement - Construction begins for Fremantle High St upgrade3839Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml22/01/2020 1:30:29 AM2020-01-22T01:30:00Z Construction has begun on the $118 million High Street and Stirling Highway intersection upgrade in Fremantle with the first sod turned today. The joint Australian and WA government project will bust congestion and dramatically improve safety along a 1.5km section of High Street between Carrington Street and Stirling Highway, with construction and design works being undertaken by outstanding WA builder Georgiou. WA Premier Mark McGowan said the upgrade was only one example of a suite of projects to be delivered this year. "2020 is shaping up to be a huge year for public infrastructure construction across Western Australia," Mr McGowan said. "The start of the High Street upgrade will complement the huge array of projects that are part of our job-creating transport plan for WA, including METRONET. "The High Street upgrade will deliver a more efficient route for locals and visitors travelling to and from Fremantle. "We welcome the input of the City of Fremantle and the local community, who have helped shape the concept design and ensured that the project will move forward with strong support." Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the upgrade would be a boost for the local economy with hundreds of new jobs created during construction. "We also know that this intersection has become notorious for truck rollovers and the upgrade will mean a safer journey for locals and truck drivers," Mr Tudge said. "The Morrison Government promised to get the people of Perth home sooner and safer, and that's what we will deliver." The upgrade is part of the Morrison Government's strategy to bust congestion in Western Australia which includes $13.6 billion committed since coming to office in 2013. WA Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the upgrade would reduce travel times. "This upgrade will reduce travel times along High Street by improving traffic flow through the busy High Street and Stirling Highway intersection," Ms Saffioti said. "It joins an extensive list of southern suburb road projects that are currently under construction and will deliver major time savings once completed. "Thanks to positive community consultation, we have also expanded the project scope to include two new pedestrian underpasses and improved parking and safety at the Fremantle Netball Centre. "We will continue to alleviate pressure on roads by boosting freight on rail from 15 per cent to over 20 per cent, developing intermodals, and planning for the new Fremantle traffic and rail corridor solution to replace the current Fremantle Traffic Bridge." About 700 jobs will be created during construction, which will include A new roundabout at the intersection of High Street and Stirling Highway Widened median on High Street to separate traffic lanes and maximise mature tree preservation Single-lane one-way service road for residents on the northern side of High Street New underpass at the junction of Forrest Street and Stirling Highway New underpass at the junction of Montreal Street and High Street In the five years to 2018, there were 282 crashes along this section of High Street, including some truck rollovers at the High Street and Stirling Highway intersection. The new roundabout has been designed to include bypass lanes that will separate local traffic from traffic going to and from Fremantle Port, or locations north of the river. These intersection changes will improve efficiency and address safety concerns with the current intersection, including reducing the risk of truck rollovers. Residents living in properties on the northern side of High Street will now have a dedicated single-lane service road, affording them safer access and separation from the main road. Meanwhile, the two new underpasses will improve pedestrian and cyclist connectivity across the intersection. The project will also provide new formal parking bays adjacent to the Fremantle Netball Association to improve safety on game days. Through carefully considered design features, the project will retain more than 70 per cent of the established trees in the area. These design features include a wide, tree-lined median on High Street, which will separate the eastbound and westbound traffic lanes, providing an attractive gateway into Fremantle. Main Roads is also finalising an extensive landscaping and revegetation strategy for the project, which covers revegetation and landscaping of the road reserve to improve local amenity on High Street and Stirling Highway. Additionally, following feedback from the local community, the strategy has been expanded to include a significant tuart tree planting initiative across local sites. The High Street upgrade is just one of the projects being delivered by the Australian and WA governments aimed at 'boosting jobs and busting congestion'. The Australian Government is providing $73.6 million and the WA Government $44.4 million for the upgrade. In this area, the Australian and WA governments have also committed $230 million to build a replacement corridor solution to the Fremantle Traffic Bridge. Premier's office - 6552 5000 Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500
New dive trail for Marmion Marine Park3093Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml22/01/2020 12:03:45 AM2020-01-22T00:00:00Z New Marmion Angling and Aquatic Club Dive and Snorkel Trail provides another drawcard for the Marmion Marine Park Marmion Marine Park's latest underwater experience, the Marmion Angling and Aquatic Club Dive and Snorkel Trail, has officially opened. The 400 metre trail takes scuba divers and snorkellers on an interactive journey through the clear waters of the marine park, which are often inhabited by a colourful array of fish and marine species. Suitable for all levels, the trail varies in depth between two to six metres, with 20 underwater plinths installed to guide divers and snorkellers, printed with fun activities, facts and directions. The plaques were illustrated by Kellee Merritt and feature a range of sea creatures likely to be encountered in the marine park. Accompanying the trail is a mural painted on the outside of the Marmion Angling and Aquatic Club (MAAC) by local artist Brenton See, featuring land-based information and safety signage. The MAAC Dive and Snorkel Trail is a collaboration between the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions and the Marmion Angling and Aquatic Club. Situated offshore from Perth's northern suburbs between Trigg Island and Burns Beach, Marmion Marine Park features lagoons, reefs and small islands that provide habitats for seabirds, marine mammals and other remarkably diverse marine life. For more information about the trail, visit https//parks.dpaw.wa.gov.au/site/maac-dive-and-snorkel-trail Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "Marmion Marine Park remains Perth's primary recreational water activity spot, attracting as many as 1.75 million visits each year. "The lagoons and reefs in the park are a diver's paradise, filled with the most spectacular array of fish species such as western blue devils, banded sweep and crested morwong. "The new MAAC Dive and Snorkel Trail is sure to be a drawcard for underwater enthusiasts, both local and national, as they learn more about the spectacular marine life of Western Australia." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Grants open to help farmers grow WA’s pine resource790Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statementshtml21/01/2020 11:56:49 PM2020-01-21T23:00:00Z Farm Forestry Assist grants now open to farmers wanting to plant pine trees Grant recipients to receive free pine seedlings from the Forest Products Commission The program has already enabled seven farmers to contribute to the sustainable future of WA forestry Forestry Minister Dave Kelly today opened up grants for farmers and land owners interested in increasing Western Australia's softwood resource by establishing pine plantations on their properties. The Farm Forestry Assist grants program, run through the Forest Products Commission, was launched by the McGowan Government in 2018. The program has so far enabled seven farmers from Augusta to Waroona plant 412,000 seedlings to help contribute to the State's expanding softwood estate. Farmers and landowners interested in establishing 20 to 50 hectare pine plantations on their properties are invited to apply for the third round of the grants program. Successful applicants will receive free high-quality radiata pine seedlings from the Forest Products Commission nursery. Criteria addressing the location, scale, soil, access and management of the plantations are in place to ensure that any resulting plantings have the capacity to help support WA's vibrant softwood industry. Applications close at 5pm on Friday, March 27, 2020. For more information, visit http//www.fpc.wa.gov.au/farm-forestry-assist Comments attributed to Forestry Minister Dave Kelly "The McGowan Government supports a strong sustainable forestry industry and is focused on growing Western Australia's softwood supply to support WA forestry jobs. "Planting trees on farms provides a range of environmental and on-farm benefits, and supports regional communities and the agriculture and forestry industries that underpin them. "The McGowan Government has invested more than $22 million in new softwood plantations since being elected in 2017 to ensure the local forestry sector is a vibrant industry into the future." Minister's office - 6552 6100
Margaret River Hockey Club set to benefit from funding boost5303Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements2800html21/01/2020 4:50:10 AM2020-01-21T04:50:00Z Margaret River Hockey Club getting new synthetic turf half-pitch with lighting More than $334,000 to be provided under State Government's Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities Fund The new half-pitch will save local players the 90-minute round trip to train in Busselton The Margaret River Hockey Club will soon install a new synthetic turf half-pitch with lighting, thanks to a $334,289 contribution from the State Government. The half-pitch is to be located at Gloucester Park, the premier sporting precinct in Margaret River, adjacent to the town's bowling club. The total cost of the project is $1,002,869. The State Government is to provide a third of the funding through the Community Sporting and Recreation Facilities Fund (CSRFF). The balance of funding for the half-pitch will be provided by the Shire of Augusta Margaret River ($293,500), the Margaret River Hockey Club ($175,000) and the Federal Government ($200,000). The Margaret River Hockey Club has more than 150 members who currently have to train and play in Busselton, which is a 90-minute round trip. The club will continue to play all games in Busselton. The Shire and club have also committed to creating a sinking fund to enable the replacement of the synthetic turf in the future. This year, the State Government will provide a total of $12 million in CSRFF funding to community groups and local governments across Western Australia to help develop better sport and recreation facilities. Comments attributed to Sport and Recreation Minister Mick Murray "This is a much-needed facility for the Augusta-Margaret River area, and I expect it will be well used and appreciated. "This new training half-pitch will give players a modern facility, much easier access and more time to develop their skills, as well as being able to practise after hours. "Both the Shire and club are also to be commended for committing to a sinking fund for future works at the facility." Minister's office - 6552 6400
Road safety boost for towns along South Western Highway5302Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements5810html21/01/2020 3:15:10 AM2020-01-21T03:15:00Z Reduced speed limit to be trialled in four towns along the South Western Highway 40kmh trial will run from January to May 2020 Part of wider plan to reduce regional road trauma across WA McGowan Government allocated $2 billion towards regional roads in last Budget The main streets of four South-West towns are to be converted to 40kmh under a McGowan Government trial to improve driver and pedestrian safety. From the end of January, the speed limit on the South Western Highway will be lowered to 40kmh through Boyanup, Donnybrook, Balingup and Bridgetown. The initiative follows meetings held last year by the Minister for Road Safety and local MP Mick Murray with local councils, to discuss the conflict between pedestrians and vehicles in these town centres. The introduction of the lower speed zone along these sections of main street will help manage this risk. The trial has been designed to help Main Roads develop an effective speed signing plan, using conventional speed signs, that will achieve the best driver compliance with a 40kmh speed limit in a town main street environment. The trial will be overseen by a technical working group, chaired by Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray. The group will include representatives from local governments, Main Roads Western Australia and the Road Safety Commission. The trial will commence by the end of January 2020 and be completed in May. Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "These regional towns are accessed by an average of 6,000 vehicles per day. I'm pleased that pedestrian and road user safety will be improved with the introduction of this trial. "We have allowed about three months to monitor road user reaction to the new speed limit and evaluate results of the trial." Comments attributed to Road Safety Minister Michelle Roberts "This is an initiative the Member for Collie-Preston has championed and I've been very happy to support it. "When Mick Murray and I visited these towns last year to discuss the proposal, the message was loud and clear. "Nobody wants traffic travelling through these towns at speed. "We want pedestrians, cyclists, children and the elderly to be safe in these beautiful towns. "We know that dropping 10kmh off a speed limit makes a big difference to the stopping distance of a vehicle. "This will not just add to road safety, but it will also improve community amenity." Comments attributed to Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray "I'm very pleased to have reached the stage where we can announce this trial of lower speed limits through Boyanup, Donnybrook, Balingup and Bridgetown. "Members of the community have contacted me countless times in recent years to raise concerns about the increased truck movements through their towns and to ask for the speed limit to be lowered. "This is a great result which will make these South-West towns safer and has come about through different communities and councils presenting a unified front to reach a common goal." Transport Minister's office - 6552 5500 Road Safety Minister's office - 6552 6900
Calling all waste champions - Infinity Awards return in 20205301Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4300html21/01/2020 3:05:57 AM2020-01-21T03:00:00Z Nominations are now open for the 2020 Infinity Awards Organisations and individuals encouraged to share waste reduction success stories New awards category introduced to recognise WA's regional waste leaders Nominations are now being sought for the 2020 Infinity Awards which celebrate Western Australia's waste champions and recognise innovative solutions to reduce waste and meet the reuse and recycling targets in Western Australia's Waste Strategy. Open to individuals, business and industry, government, schools, community organisations, not-for-profits and media outlets, the categories for the 2020 Infinity Awards include Avoid Recover Protect - Community Waste Award; Avoid Recover Protect - Commercial and Industrial Waste Award; Avoid Recover Protect - Waste Management Award; Avoid Recover Protect - WA Regional Waste Award (new category in 2020); 2020 Waste Champion; 2020 Young Waste Achiever; Waste Team of the Year; Waste Innovation of the Year; Waste Wise School of the Year; and Media Award. A further two awards - the 2020 WA Waste Award and the 2020 Waste Initiative of the Year - will be awarded at the judges' discretion. Nominations for the Infinity Awards will close at 5pm on March 10, 2020. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on May 6, 2020. Full details, including criteria and entry forms, can be found at http//www.wasteauthority.wa.gov.au/submissions/view/infinity-awards Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "Across Western Australia we have countless individuals and organisations going the extra mile to achieve a reduction in waste and an increase in resource recovery. "These individuals and organisations all play an important role in contributing to the McGowan Government's target for at least 75 per cent of waste generated in this State to be reused or recycled by 2030. "The 2020 Infinity Awards are a celebration of the remarkable work being achieved in waste reduction in Western Australia. This year, we're pleased to introduce a new category to extend the opportunities for regional waste champions to be recognised for their achievements." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Joint media statement - New era for Rottnest Island’s West End as $33 million infrastructure program gets underway5268Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements10760html21/01/2020 1:21:27 AM2020-01-21T01:15:00Z Installation of important tourism infrastructure to boost visitor experiences at island's more remote West End $1.92 million project one of nine tourism infrastructure projects funded by the Federal Government's $17.2 million allocation from the Tourism Icons program State Government committing $16.2 million towards a new Fuel Jetty and a new barge landing Rottnest's spectacular West End will receive a tourism infrastructure boost in the first of a suite of Federal and State Government projects to support growing visitor interest in the island. The rugged and remote West End - which boasts a seal colony and a host of other natural and marine wildlife attractions - will soon have new shelters, seating, access pathways, viewing platforms and an ablution building. The $1.92 million project is one of nine funded by the Federal Government's Tourism Icons program and is set to feature public artwork and interactive features by Noongar artists. Work is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Assistant Minister for Regional Tourism Jonno Duniam said the project would upgrade amenities and tourism infrastructure on the more remote West End, ensuring better visitor experiences in the increasingly popular area. "Rottnest is a jewel in Australia's crown of stunning tourism locations and the Commonwealth is investing to ensure it can keep up with demand," Assistant Minister Duniam said. "The West End project is part of a $33 million suite of Federal and State Government projects to revitalise and build new infrastructure on Rottnest - supporting the island's ongoing growth in visitor numbers. "It is vital we continue to invest in stunning natural experiences like Rottnest Island, and that's exactly what we are doing. "A total of $17.2 million in Commonwealth funding will be spent over the next three years as part of the Tourism Icons program, including $700,000 for new infrastructure at the island's premier swimming spot The Basin, including a new shaded seating area, refurbished toilets, new beach showers and landscaping. $2 million for the revitalisation of the Wadjemup Hill lighthouse vicinity, including a transport hub. The work will include a new shaded seating area and accommodation, including the upgrade of the Lighthouse Keepers' House. $600,000 for new wayfinding signage to help visitors navigate their way around the island." The State Government has also allocated $16.2 million towards the redevelopment of Rottnest's Fuel Jetty and the construction of a new barge landing to ease the pressure on the Main Jetty precinct. The new Fuel Jetty will offer improved facilities and accessibility to the island, including power and water, new finger jetties, improved refuelling/berthing for smaller vessels and an extended end platform. WA Tourism Minister Paul Papalia said the the $3 million fuel jetty project has been finalised and tenders have been sought for its demolition and reconstruction, scheduled to begin in April. "As the number of visitors to Rottnest continues to increase, the State and Commonwealth governments are investing in infrastructure to support this growth," Minister Papalia said. "The State Government has committed critical infrastructure funding for the jetty and barge landing to ensure services are maintained and the visitor experience is enhanced. "The boating fraternity are an important part of the Rottnest community, with thousands of private boats making the trip to Rottnest every month, and this funding ensures better experiences for all." WA Tourism Minister's office - 6552 5600
Government moves to ensure swift payment of suppliers5300Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements11420html21/01/2020 1:22:40 AM2020-01-20T22:00:00Z GTEs to be required to ensure suppliers are paid within 30 days Some GTEs have different policies when it comes to paying suppliers Department of Treasury to liaise with GTEs to ensure alignment with State Government's policy State Government Ministers will require Government Trading Enterprises (GTEs) within their portfolios to align with the State Government's policy that ensures suppliers of government goods and services are paid within 30 days. This follows reports last week that some GTEs, including the Water Corporation, had different policies when it comes to paying suppliers and that in some cases contractors were being offered early payments, in exchange for discounts on their invoices. The State Government requires all commercial payments to be paid within 30 days of the receipt of the creditor's claim, or within 30 days of provision of the goods or services (whichever is later), except where the terms or conditions of a contract relating to a claim for payment provide for alternate payment arrangements or where a discount is offered by a supplier for early payment. Treasurer Ben Wyatt wrote to Ministers this week, requesting them to ensure GTEs within their portfolios align with this policy. The Department of Treasury will be liaising directly with GTEs to confirm alignment with the 30-day policy. Comments attributed to Treasurer Ben Wyatt "The State Government's view is that all government agencies and Government Trading Enterprises must abide by the 30-day Government policy for the payment of invoices. "Governments should lead by example and if suppliers do the work, they should expect to be paid in a timely manner. "The issues raised last week by Water Corporation suppliers were rightly deemed unacceptable by the Premier. "As the Premier made clear last week, we don't believe this is acceptable and have moved swiftly to ensure suppliers are paid within 30 days or sooner when possible." Treasurer's office - 6552 5900
Hay Street Bridge height clearance to increase5254Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements12110html20/01/2020 7:11:51 AM2020-01-20T07:10:00Z Transport Minister Rita Saffioti today announced that an alliance contract had been awarded to Bocol and MACA Joint Venture (BMJV) for work on the Hay Street Bridge in the city. The work will increase the clearance of the Hay Street Bridge by 250 millimetres for southbound motorists, over the Mitchell Freeway in Perth. To achieve this, a six metre by 21 metre-long section of the existing bridge will be replaced with a new raised section. A bridge protection beam will also be installed to help minimise the risk of damage in the event of future strikes by unauthorised over-height vehicles. The Hay Street Bridge was constructed in 1968 and complied with bridge height clearance standards at that time, however, it is now considered a low height clearance structure. Data shows that the bridge has been hit 20 times, nine of those in the past five years alone. In order for this project to be completed in a safe and effective way, the southbound freeway at this location will need to be closed for two full weekends - one weekend to dismantle the bridge section and another to install the new bridge section. It is expected that these closures will take place approximately two months apart but the bridge and freeway will remain open during the day with additional night closures only during the project. Freeway closure details including dates will be widely communicated to the public once they are confirmed closer to construction. Work is expected to be completed by September 2020. The $6.75 million project is being funded by the State Government. Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "As most Perth road users would be aware, there are very significant safety risks and traffic delays caused by unauthorised over-height vehicles hitting the Hay Street Bridge when travelling southbound on Mitchell Freeway. "Lane closures are often required to clean up resulting debris and to assess potential bridge damage. This leads to heavy traffic congestion for long periods of time, causing road users to become frustrated. "Modification works will be undertaken by an alliance contract. It is expected that 40 new jobs will be created during the construction phase. "Given the complex nature of these works, as well as the location, there will be substantial impacts for road users and the wider community. "Main Roads and BMJV will explore all opportunities to minimise these impacts, and will work closely with stakeholders during the development of the design and construction." Minister's office - 6552 5500
Firefighting aerial giant touches down in Perth5253Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements8570html21/01/2020 4:41:13 AM2020-01-20T06:45:00Z First large air tanker to be based in WA touched down in Perth today LAT can drop 11,350 litres of water or retardant and can travel at speeds over 650 kmh Western Australia's fire response capabilities bolstered with new aircraftThe first large air tanker (LAT) to be based in Western Australia touched down at RAAF Base Pearce today adding a significant new asset to the State's aerial firefighting fleet. The LAT, an Erickson Aero MD 87, can drop 11,350 litres of water or retardant and travel at speeds over 650 km/h. This is the first time that WA has had a LAT based in the State and follows the McGowan Government's longstanding advocacy for greater resources for WA's aerial firefighting fleet. The new aircraft has been delivered through the Federal Government's recent $20 million funding boost for Australia's aerial firefighting fleet in December. The decision to base the aircraft in WA was made by the National Aerial Firefighting Centre, a business unit of the Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council. The new aircraft will be based at RAAF Base Pearce, and managed by the Department of Fire and Emergency Services and the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions. Comments attributed to Emergency Services Minister Francis Logan "The arrival of this new aircraft is fantastic news for Western Australia and I would like to thank the Federal Government for the funding increase and the National Aerial Firefighting Centre for choosing to base a large air tanker here. "We obviously have a significant amount of territory to cover and this MD 87 will be a great help. "It cannot work in isolation though and it is part of a multi-faceted aerial firefighting fleet that includes helicopters and light planes. "Any aerial support still needs firefighters on the ground and it's important to recognise that it is a combined approach that brings the best results." Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "I would like to thank the Federal Government for their funding increase that has led to more aerial firefighting resources for Western Australia. "I am sure that this large air tanker will be a very welcome sight for our firefighters when they are battling a fire on the ground. "We have vast national parks that cover a wide range of vegetation and terrains and this new aircraft will make a significant difference when there is restricted access for our on-the-ground resources. "However, like any firefighting resource, it has its limits and needs to be used in conjunction with the rest of the aerial firefighting fleet and firefighters at the fire front for the best possible results." Emergency Services Minister's office - 6552 6300 Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800
McGowan Government contributes $200,000 for Port Beach rock wall5252Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements8180html20/01/2020 12:10:09 AM2020-01-18T02:30:00Z McGowan Government and City of Fremantle partner to address Port Beach erosion Temporary rock wall to protect beach and infrastructure while a longer-term solution is developed Rock wall to be built ahead of winter to provide storm protection Investment follows release of Coastal Erosion Hotspots in Western Australia report last yearThe McGowan Government will contribute $200,000 towards a temporary rock wall to protect the infrastructure at Port Beach in North Fremantle. Port Beach was identified as an at-risk location in the Coastal Erosion Hotspots in Western Australia report released last year. Today's $200,000 contribution follows a State Government grant of $50,000 provided to the City of Fremantle in August last year to undertake further analysis on the issue of coastal erosion at Port Beach. The funding will be matched by the City of Fremantle to build the $400,000 rock wall, which will serve as an interim measure to protect local infrastructure. The project will involve constructing a rock wall to adjoin the existing wall in front of the beach change rooms and replenishing sand on the dune in front of Coast Café. The City of Fremantle is aiming to have the wall built prior to winter, when the area is more prone to damaging weather and severe erosion. A technical advisory group for the North Fremantle development precinct has been formed to investigate options for the long-term solution to erosion in the area. Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "Construction of this rock wall is intended to secure Port Beach's current functions and provide time to refine and implement a long-term approach. "Port Beach is hugely popular with locals and visitors, and we are working with local government and the community to devise longer-term safeguards. "The McGowan Government has also called on a greater role from the Federal Government in addressing the national issue of coastal erosion." Comments attributed to Bicton MLA Lisa O'Malley "I've had a lot of discussions with local business owners, beachgoers and residents about the plan to manage erosion at Port Beach. "It's clear a longer-term plan is required, however, the temporary rock wall will give us the time to find ways to address the increasing challenges faced due to changing environmental conditions. "Coastal monitoring and data collection is currently in progress with the aim to develop a longer-term coastal adaptation strategy for Port Beach. "There has been a groundswell of local support for taking action on Port Beach and I thank everyone who has provided feedback." Minister's office - 6552 5500
McGowan Government flags classic car and street rod rego discount5251Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements11240html20/01/2020 12:10:07 AM2020-01-18T01:30:00Z New scheme to offer 75 per cent registration discount for classic vehicles registered to an approved club 'Concessions for Classics' scheme to stimulate business and jobs in automotive industry Scheme removes red tape for classic car owners that only drive occasionally WA's motoring culture celebrated through classic vehicle registration concessions The McGowan Government is introducing a new quarter-price registration scheme to bring more classic cars out of the shed and onto the road. The new 'Concessions for Classics' licensing scheme will remove restrictions that currently prevent modified classic vehicles and street rods from accessing licence concessions. Under the new scheme, all car and motorcycle enthusiasts with a vehicle older than 30 years that are also registered to a Department of Transport approved club, will be eligible for the 75 per cent registration concession. Feedback from local motoring clubs and custom vehicle owners suggested the old licensing arrangement discouraged vehicles that would otherwise be used for tourism events, exhibitions and special events from being registered at all. Under 'Concessions for Classics', the annual registration discount would vary from vehicle to vehicle depending on specification. For example A 1956 Holden FJ would drop from $748.90 to $167.35 a year; A 1970 Ford GT would drop from $839.40 to $169.20 a year; A 1929 Ford Roadster would drop from $721.20 to $139.65 a year; and A 1974 Holden Torana SLR would drop from $768.45 to $151.50 a year. The Department of Transport is currently drafting regulation changes and upgrading systems to support the 'Concessions for Classics' scheme. Part of this process will involve the Department of Transport meeting with stakeholders such as motoring clubs to discuss details such as registering a club and defining what constitutes a club event. Drafting is proceeding as quickly as possible and the McGowan Government is aiming to have the new registration scheme available to owners in the second half of 2020. Owners will be subject to a number of conditions such as identification labels, annual vehicle inspections and vehicle use being limited to attending club shows and events. To stay updated, visit http//www.transport.wa.gov.au/concessionsforclassics and subscribe to receive emails in relation to the scheme. Comments attributed to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti "Western Australians love their classic cars and motorcycles, resulting in a strong local motoring scene. "Many local motoring enthusiasts also attend cruises, exhibitions and events that often attract tourists or raise funds for charities. "It's clear that a large amount of classic vehicle enthusiasts are only using their pride and joy for special events such as cruises or shows - so it's unfair they should pay full registration. "Our current registration system also prevents classic car owners from accessing registration concessions if modifications - even safety improvements - have been made to their vehicles. "This new scheme will remove that red tape and encourage more owners to get their classic cars and bikes out to events. "I have been approached by many classic vehicle owners who say the annual registration cost is too high for classic cars that are only used occasionally. "We will now work with those owners to finalise the details of the policy. "The more classic vehicles that are brought out of the shed to qualify for the scheme, the more flow-on benefits we will see in the local automotive industry." Minister's office - 6552 5500
Changing lives for the better - celebrating WA’s corrective services5231Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4890html17/01/2020 8:01:21 AM2020-01-17T08:00:00Z National Corrections Day celebrates Australia's corrective services staff for their important, but 'behind-the-scenes' work Today's celebration coincides with 50th anniversary of Bandyup Women's Prison Staff recognition events have been held throughout the week at prisons, work camps, farms and WA's detention centreCorrective Services employees throughout Western Australia have spent the week being celebrated for their achievements in helping to keep the community safe. Today is National Corrections Day and events have been held this week throughout the State's corrective services prisons, work camps, farms, youth detention centre, and offices to recognise the often unheralded achievements of WA's corrective services staff. Corrective Services Minister Francis Logan joined staff at Bandyup Women's Prison today to mark the national day and to commemorate the prison's 50th anniversary of operation. Bandyup prison sits on previous farming land and began as the 'Bandyup Training Centre' in 1970 to house female prisoners who had been accommodated at Fremantle Prison. Today the facility holds maximum, medium and minimum-security prisoners as well as mothers and their babies in specially designed accommodation. It focuses on providing women with skills to help employment opportunities on release as well as rehabilitative programs. The key to the prison's success, which included recently introducing a beauty therapy training facility, is down to the staff. Today many were recognised for their achievements with various awards by the prison's superintendent. Similar awards ceremonies have been held throughout WA's corrective services facilities this week to recognise the important and rewarding efforts of the State's 4,500 corrective services employees. Perth landmarks including the Bell Tower, Elizabeth Quay and the Matagarup Bridge were also illuminated in the National Corrections Day colours of blue and green this week and each day Yagan Square featured the faces of corrective services staff. Comments attributed to Corrective Services Minister Francis Logan "It was fantastic to attend today's celebrations for the staff at Bandyup Women's Prison who are doing remarkable work in trying to turn prisoners' lives around. "The prison is also commemorating 50 years of operations. It is a very different facility to how it started with a very different cohort of female offenders. "It is not an easy job working in corrective services, but is a very important one. "Whether you are in a prison, work camp, head office or a community offender management office your work is vital to keep the community safe and for making a difference in an offender's behaviour. "I have visited every prison, work camp and prison farm in WA on multiple occasions and I have visited nearly all the Youth Justice offices and Adult Community Corrections offices throughout the State, and there is always a common theme of wanting to make a difference. "I am glad that this week, and especially today, we have turned the focus on the 4500 corrective services staff who make a significant difference to community safety, but whose efforts can often go unheralded." Minister's office - 6552 6300
First Aboriginal trainees graduate from Mid-West shearing camp5230Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4040html17/01/2020 5:02:52 AM2020-01-17T05:00:00Z Aboriginal trainees graduate from shearing camp run by State Government and Mhunga Whalla Success of camp to pave the way for new Aboriginal-focused training hubs in Mid-West and other parts of the State The first trainees today graduated from a Mid-West training camp that may serve as a prototype for creating both Aboriginal economic development and new shearing labour. The Geraldton-based Mhunga Whalla group and the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development organised the camp at a Northampton farm. Participants aged 16 to 29 completed a two-week course facilitated by accredited trainers and are now looking to gain work in the State's shearing industry. The McGowan Government is supporting a similar shearing camp in Brookton, and has plans to further expand the model in conjunction with the WA Shearing Industry Association. Mhunga Whalla is considering developing a permanent training facility in the Mid-West. The Mid-West camp attracted strong financial and logistical support from Australian Wool Innovation and many local businesses and individuals. Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan congratulated the camp graduates Jamaine Narrier; Clinton Narrier; Taharna Mitchell; Leeson Flanagan; Brentley Comeagain; Rob Ronan; Kahsan Stack; Edward Ponta; and Robbie Speight. Comments attributed to Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan "With wool prices on the rebound, demand is growing for shearers. "Many young Aboriginal people today had grandparents in the industry - and they live in sheep growing regions. It makes sense to offer this employment opportunity for young Aboriginal people across our regions and particularly in the Mid-West. "This program responds to the projected 10 per cent per annum growth in demand for shearing labour to meet the increases in wool production. "Congratulations and thank you to Bobby Pepper and the Mhunga Whalla team, the Teakle family from Northampton for hosting the camp, and the dedicated departmental staff for their efforts. "This is the first step towards realising the Government's vision of creating permanent Aboriginal-focused shearing training hubs in the Mid-West and other parts of the State." Minister's office - 6552 6200
New Government-backed beach patrol services for Mandurah5229Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements4420html17/01/2020 2:05:34 AM2020-01-17T02:05:00Z The McGowan Government is working to make summers safer for Western Australians A three-year trial begins on Monday to bring lifesaving services to Mandurah The City of Mandurah has been a leading council in beach safety initiatives Acting Fisheries Minister David Templeman has welcomed the City of Mandurah's decision to introduce Surf Life Saving WA patrol services to watch over its popular beaches. The McGowan Government has put $287,000 towards supporting a $553,329 contract to trial the beach safety services which, starting on Monday (January 20), will cover the cost of lifesaving patrols, with options for additional services such as jet ski and inflatable rescue boat services. Last year, the Government agreed to a request from the City of Mandurah, for funds originally allocated for a beach enclosure at Falcon, to be used for community-preferred lifesaving services at its popular beaches. Mandurah's community already has a keen Sea Sense, being one of the top locations where surfers and divers have claimed the McGowan Government's world-first $200 rebate to buy scientifically proven personal shark deterrent devices. The new SharkSmart WA app is also popular, with more than 17,000 downloads. The free app helps people switch on their Sea Sense when they head to our beaches this summer. Find out more information at https//www.sharksmart.com.au/staying-safe/sea-sense Comments attributed to Acting Fisheries Minister David Templeman "I congratulate Mandurah on its plan for three years of beach patrols that will support its community and provide lifesavers at four locations. "Patrols will operate at Pyramids, Falcon Bay and San Remo, as well as Town Beach, until mid-April. The lifesaving services trial will be assessed annually over three years. "These new services align with WA's comprehensive shark mitigation strategy, which funds Surf Life Saving WA beach and helicopter patrols along Perth metropolitan and south-west beaches, including Mandurah. "Mandurah also initiated installation of Beach Emergency Number signs, since developed by the McGowan Government and offered to coastal councils from the Mid-West to Esperance. "Collectively almost 900 BEN signs are now installed, covering 820 coastal locations, with unique codes for emergency services to pinpoint the locations in an emergency." Minister's office - 6552 5300
Recycling charities funded through dumping reduction program5228Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements8080html17/01/2020 2:04:22 AM2020-01-17T02:00:00Z $41,859 awarded under the Charitable Recyclers Dumping Reduction Program Funding from this round to build on findings from first round of fundingWestern Australian charities, Alinea Inc in partnership with Good Samaritan Industries and Anglicare WA, have secured more than $41,000 in funding to help reduce dumping at charitable recycling sites. The funding is available through the Charitable Recyclers Dumping Reduction Program, and also enables research to inform better practices by charitable recyclers. Research findings are circulated through the National Association of Charitable Recycling Organisations - WA. This is the second round of program funding and builds on findings from the first funding round. The successful applicants were Alinea Inc in partnership with Good Samaritan Industries - $19,984 to install sensor lighting and optical surveillance equipment at four collection sites in the metropolitan area; and Anglicare WA - $21,875 to purchase and install ten high security donation bins at four sites in the metropolitan area.The program assists charitable recyclers that divert used items from landfill and recover them for recycling and reuse. It aims to reduce illegal dumping and littering, and to prevent unusable items - which ultimately end up in landfill - being left at donation sites. This funding is in addition to the State Government's Charitable Recyclers Rebate program, which provides up to $250,000 in funding each year. Funding supports eligible charitable recyclers to reduce the substantial costs incurred in disposing of items deposited or illegally dumped at drop-off sites that cannot be reused or recycled. For more information on these programs visit the Waste Authority's website. To report illegal dumping, contact DWER's Pollution Watch hotline on 1300 784 782. Comments attributed to Environment Minister Stephen Dawson "Illegal dumping and unusable donations are a widespread problem faced by charities. "This program not only helps reduce illegal dumping and littering through better surveillance and security, but also through ongoing research. "Charitable recyclers welcome useful and resalable donations and are an example of recycling in action, yet they are often left with the unsightly and expensive problem of disposing of unusable or illegally dumped items at their sites. "They also provide critical services across the Western Australian community and it is vital that every dollar they raise is spent on services, not on waste disposal." Minister's office - 6552 5800
Western Australian data assisting bushfire response5227Department of the Premier and Cabinet, Media Statements6960html17/01/2020 12:08:11 AM2020-01-16T22:05:00Z Landgate data has been made available to Commonwealth agencies and not-for-profit organisations to assist with the national bushfire response Maps provide vital information on landscape and terrain Landgate's data has been made available to various organisations to support response and recovery efforts for the bushfire emergencies occurring across Australia. Topographic maps of Western Australia have been provided to the Australian Defence Force to support Operation Bushfire Assist in the event that WA is severely impacted by bushfires for the remainder of this bushfire season. The maps provide a summary of the landscape and terrain while displaying important physical (natural and man-made) features including road names, contours, spot heights, cities, towns and buildings. They are particularly useful in remote areas where terrain and lack of internet access can affect operations on the ground. National datasets for areas burnt during the current fire season have also been provided to support the Commonwealth Department of Environment and Energy in carrying out environmental impact analyses, and Landcare Australia in their community group recovery efforts. Comments attributed to Acting Lands Minister Stephen Dawson "We've always said Western Australia stands ready to help those impacted by the devastating bushfires in any way we can. "This is a great example of various levels of government working together to support the community. "Landgate is Western Australia's land information authority and has the most extensive continuous dataset of fire burnt areas across Australia. The data provided will underpin environmental and community group recovery efforts. "Our thoughts are with those impacted by these devastating bushfires. On behalf of the State Government, I thank all emergency services personnel and volunteers for their ongoing dedication and support." Minister's office - 6552 5900