Collaboration with the people of Norfolk Island
24 September 2018
I am delighted to have been appointed Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories and I look forward to working with the community of Norfolk Island.
I am passionate about promoting the benefits of living and working in regional and remote Australia. Since being elected as the Member for Farrer in 2001 it has been an honour to represent and serve the people of my NSW electorate along with the Australian community in a number of roles.
I note Minister McVeigh met with many people and organisations on the Island in late July this year, with a number of issues confirmed as high priority, including:
- Designing a new community health facility
- Resealing of the Norfolk Island airport runway, and
- Extra support for local agri-businesses.
It is also a high priority to bring on board a partner in delivering the full range of state services for Norfolk Island. NSW is currently providing health and education services and this will continue until at least June 2021.
My objective is to establish a state service delivery model with a strong partner, ensuring the community can access the same types of services available to comparable communities on the mainland, while recognising the unique circumstances of a small island, 1600km from its nearest major city.
To achieve this I will work openly and transparently, keeping you informed of the progress as discussions occur and changes are considered. The ongoing priority will be good governance and the delivery of quality, essential services and critical infrastructure for the Island.
A sustainable future is a shared responsibility, with constructive contributions from the community being vital. The Administrator, Eric Hutchinson, is committed to ongoing engagement and always happy to talk through any concerns or ideas. I encourage interested members of the community to contact his office.
I want to work with, and support, the people of Norfolk Island to maintain the Island's strong sense of identity and heritage, preserving a unique culture and strengthening the economy towards a prosperous future.
Mayor Robin Adams has offered me a warm invitation to visit Norfolk Island soon, and I expect to do so in the next two months.