Richard Farmer's Daily Email Briefing
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The Government's Grass Roots Gravy Train
John Howard is on the campaign trail and electioneering is not just the things that make the headlines in the major dailies and the network television news at night. The Government gravy train stops at a lot of local stations. Just take a look at the list of the Prime Ministerial give aways. John Howard truly believes that all elections are local.
23 October 2007 A re-elected Coalition Government will allocate $4 billion to: Increase the Utilities Allowance paid to older Australians in receipt of income support to meet basic household bills like power and gas. From March 2008 the Utilities Allowance will increase from $107.20 to $500 a year for a single and $500 a year for a couple. This will benefit more than 2 million Australians; Extend the Utilities Allowance for the first time to more than 120,000 Carer Payment recipients regardless of age, in recognition of the vital role that carers play in our society and the financial and emotional burden they carry; Extend the Utilities Allowance to more than 700,000 Disability Support pensioners; More than double the Seniors Concession Allowance to $500, which will particularly benefit self-funded retirees, people who have worked hard, made sacrifices and saved diligently for their retirement.
22 October 2007 Tony Abbott
A re-elected Coalition Government will provide $23.8 million to the National Breast Cancer Centre over four years to fund the first and replacement breast prostheses for all Australian women who have had a mastectomy as a result of breast cancer, up to the value of $400 per prosthesis.
22 October 2007 A re-elected Coalition Government will establish a Climate Change Fund as a key element of the emissions trading scheme. The purpose of the Fund will be to ensure that a substantial proportion of emissions trading revenues are re-invested in climate change and related initiatives. (Amount not specified._
19 October 2007 The Minister for the Arts and Sport, Senator George Brandis, today announced an increase of more than $17.5 million in funding for water safety programmes, including the creation of a $10 million Beach Safety Service Development Fund to target drowning black-spots.
15 October 2007 Treasurer Peter Costello's $34 billion tax plan - I am announcing today a tax reform plan which will cut income tax for every Australian taxpayer from 1 July 2008.
10 October 2007 I am pleased to announce the Australian Government's commitment to the duplication of the Pacific Highway on an accelerated timetable through the provision of at least $2.4 billion between 2009-10 and 2013-14 with more to follow.
8 October 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will fund a number of measures to improve key elements of Tasmania's health services infrastructure, totalling $35 million over four years. Funding of $8 million will be provided over three years for the construction of new purpose-built rehabilitation and transitional care facilities and a new psychiatric unit, at the Burnie Hospital. At Launceston General Hospital $16 million will be provided over three years for the upgrading of oncology, radiotherapy and transitional care facilities and the establishment of new cardiac care facilities. A further $8.5 million will be provided over four years for specific patient transport measures. . I am also announcing that the Australian Government will provide up to $1 million in 2007-08 for each of Ouse and Rosebery Hospitals.
5 October 2007 - I am pleased to announce today that the Australian Government will provide a $95 million contribution for the construction of the Townsville Port Access Road as part of the Coalition's 2020 Plan for Australia's Transport Future.
4 October 2007 - I am pleased to announce a major upgrade of the Bruce Highway from Brisbane to Cairns as part of our 2020 plan for Australia's Transport Future, with a major focus on North Queensland between Sarina and Cairns. . Over the current five years from 2004/05 to 2008/9 the Australian Government is investing $800 million to improve the Bruce Highway, but we recognise more must be done. The Australian Government will significantly increase its investment by $2 billion for the five years from 2009, with further investment to follow by 2020. North Queensland will receive the majority of the funding for the Bruce Highway, with Sarina to Cairns receiving $800 million over the five years to 2014.
3 October 2007 - Today I am very pleased to announce that the Australian Government will provide $190 million in funding over five years to assist children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), their parents and carers.
30 September 2007 - I am very pleased to announce that the Australian Government will provide funding of $1 million to the Sydney Christmas Parade Trust to assist with the presentation of the inaugural Sydney Christmas Parade to be held on 25 November 2007.
30 September 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will provide over $12.6 million to assist rugby league celebrate its centenary in Australia.
25 September 2007 - I am pleased to announce today grants worth $560 million for health and medical research to more than 50 universities and research institutes.
25 September 2007 - The Australian Government will provide a further $714 million in drought assistance measures to support farmers through the worst drought in our nation's history. Today's funding is in addition to the $430 million announced last week to extend the 38 areas of agricultural production currently receiving Exceptional Circumstances (EC) assistance until September 2008.
21 September 2007 - The Treasurer Peter Costello announced a grant of $15 million to the Geelong Football Club to build a new grand stand.
21 September 2007 - Contribution gratefully received from a Crikey reader: My son's school has been invited to a 'special assembly' today to welcome the Federal Minister for the Environment and Water Resources and Member for Wentworth who will be presenting a cheque for $50,000 to pay for water tanks and solar water heating at the school. Double Bay Public School seems to be a favourite with Malcolm Turnbull, on his previous visit he was spruiking eco friendly lightbulbs.
21 September 2007 - The Australian Government has implemented a number of measures to help combat childhood obesity and today I am pleased to endorse the first stage of another; the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation's Wellbeing Plan for Aussie Kids. . Funding of $3 million for this project was announced in the May Budget.
21 September 2007 - It gives me great pleasure to offer my congratulations to the Matildas on reaching the quarter finals of the 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup in China. . Our recent decision to provide $16 million to Football Federation Australia builds on our earlier support and will not only assist our national teams but will help to consolidate and further grow this great game in Australia.
19 September 2007 - I am delighted to announce today that the Australian Government will provide $40 million over the next four years to increase the number of school buses equipped with seat belts for students in rural and regional areas.
17 September 2007 - I am pleased today to announce an additional $430 million in drought assistance measures for Australian farming communities.
14 September 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will invest about $170 million additional funds over five years to create 25 Australian Hospital Nursing Schools to deliver hospital based training within major public and private hospitals across the country for enrolled nurses.
13 September 2007 - I am pleased to announce that New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia are receiving $43 million in competition payments from the Australian Government following progress in implementing water reforms.
10 September 2007 - The horse flu outbreak has had a devastating impact on horse dependent industries in New South Wales and Queensland . My Government has been working closely with the industry to ensure that the people it supports - the vast bulk of whom earn modest incomes and work very hard - are supported during this difficult time. This started with an initial $4 million assistance package which was increased by a further $110 million yesterday in recognition of the seriousness of the horse flu outbreak.
7 September 2007 - Special Minister of State Gary Nairn - The Federal Government is allocating more money to help New South Wales far south coast industries cope with big cuts to the area's off-shore fishing industry. $4.5 million for local businesses in Eden, Pambula, Merimbula, Tathra, Bermagui and Narooma to set themselves up for future development. "Fifteen businesses in fact in the far south coast areas will benefit from this funding.
3 September 2007 - Today I am very pleased to announce that the Australian Government will provide Lifeline Australia with an extra $8.2 million in funding over four years.
2 September 2007 - $70.7 Million for International Climate Change Initiatives - Today I am pleased to announce new funding for three measures to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions through international cooperation.
29 August 2007 - In response to strong representations from David Tollner MP, Federal Member for Solomon, the Australian Government will provide additional funding to allow pensioners and veterans to access concessional fares on the Alice Springs to Darwin section of world famous Ghan railway. This initiative will make travel on the Ghan more affordable for about 10,000 pensioners and veterans. It will provide around $1.5 million of additional concessions for travel each year.
28 August 2007 - Further to my announcement yesterday, I am pleased to advise that Commonwealth and state officials have identified a range of Australian expertise to be offered to Greek authorities to assist current firefighting operations in Greece. The Australian expertise being offered includes two bushfire management officers (a high-level incident controller and a senior operations officer), a bushfire investigation officer, a forest fire behaviour expert and an aviation management expert.
27 August 2007 - Like all Australians I have been saddened by the tragic loss of life and property in the fires burning across Greece. . Given the loss of life and the scale of the damage Australia will offer $3 million in assistance.
23 August 2007- I am pleased to announce today that the Australian Government will provide $132.5 million to improve water quality in the Hawkesbury Nepean River.
20 August 2007 - The Australian Government is pleased to announce an increase in funding of $2.7 million over the next four years for the development and distribution of key national parenting information resources, the Raising Children DVD and the Raising Children website.
18 August 2007 - I am pleased to announce today the Australian Government will be assisting with the upgrade of the north-south road corridor from Darlington south of Adelaide to the CBD and the Port of Adelaide . To achieve this we will include South Road, south of Sir Donald Bradman Drive in the national road network and will commit some $1 billion to be matched by the South Australian Government between now and the estimated completion of the project by 2020.
18 August 2007 - I also announce today the Australian Government will provide $100 million towards the duplication of the Southern Expressway in Adelaide subject to the South Australian Government committing to provide the balance. I understand the Southern Expressway is the world's longest reversible one-way freeway.
17 August 2007 - I am pleased to announce today that the Australian Government will contribute $326,700 toward the expansion of Adelaide 's Star of the Sea Marine Discovery Centre.
14 August 2007 - The Commonwealth will offer an independent assessment to Weemala residents who have been affected by the New South Wales Government's decision to relocate them permanently or temporarily into alternative accommodation. This independent assessment process will provide advice on the immediate and longer term needs and requirements of each individual resident and help residents, and their families or advocates, to negotiate with the New South Wales Government about the appropriateness of the alternative accommodation on offer. Assessments will be undertaken by CRS Australia.
10 August 2007 - To help Australian Families protect their children the Government has today announced a world leading $189 million initiative to protect children from online dangers.
8 August 2007 - $4 million to the receiver of a Canberra timber business employing Queanbeyan residents of Eden Monaro.
1 August 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government is prepared to underwrite a community-based proposal to keep the Mersey Hospital in north-west Tasmania providing a full range of hospital services and treating public and private patients. Until final negotiations have been completed with the community it is not possible to determine the exact cost of this proposal. However comparable operating costs for similarly-sized hospitals indicate that this should cost in the order of $40-45 million a year.
24 July 2007 - The Australian Government is committed to helping local communities fight crime and has a number of programs, including the National Community Crime Prevention Program, that promote partnerships to address crime at the grass roots level. The Government is delighted to be able to assist the local community and the City of Stirling by providing funding of $85,000 to implement this important community project.
22 July - The reserve protects more than 135,000 hectares of high conservation value bushland on Queensland's Cape York, and was established with more than $6 million from the Australian Government's National Reserve System Program.
20 July 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will provide $1.225 million over four years for the continuation of the Northern Advanced Manufacturing Industry Group Project, to provide more young people in northern Adelaide with an opportunity to explore careers in the advanced manufacturing and related industries.
19 July 2007 - I am pleased to announce today that the Australian Government has given in-principle approval for funding of up to $1.179 million under the Regional Partnerships program to be negotiated for the Harpers Field Development project at the City of Tea Tree Gully .
18 July 2007 - Today I announced that in addition, the Commonwealth will provide up to $50,000 to ensure every Australian school can install a solar hot water system and a water tank. These Green Vouchers for schools . Today I announce some further steps to bring solar hot water within the reach of Australian families. We intend to provide an additional $1,000 per household so that up to another 225,000 homes can upgrade to an energy saving solar hot water system.
12 July 2007 - am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will fund a Medicare eligible Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) unit in north-west Tasmania . This unit will serve both the north-west and the west coast regions, effectively from Devonport to Strahan and Queenstown. This is the first of three new sites which were funded in the 2007-08 Budget to improve access to MRI services in under-serviced metropolitan and regional areas. This Budget measure brings the number of Medicare eligible MRI units in Australia to 115 compared to only 18 in 1998.
12 July 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will commit $1.85 million to Stage 2 of the Ulverstone Showground upgrade.
6 July 2007 - The Prime Minister and Premier Steve Bracks have agreed to additional assistance to help communities, small business owners and primary producers recover from the devastating damage caused by the floods in the Gippsland region of Victoria . To assist small business owners and farmers, the Prime Minister and Premier have agreed to jointly funded recovery grants of up to $15,000 for eligible small businesses and primary producers. The Prime Minister and Premier Bracks have also announced the establishment of a $1,000,000 Community Recovery Fund with equal contributions from the State and Commonwealth.
4 July 2007 - I am pleased to announce that the Australian Government will contribute up to $10 million towards a pipeline to improve water supply security in Bega Shire. The 20 kilometre pipeline will be used to transfer water from borefields near the lower Bega River to the Yellow Pinch Dam for use in dry times.
30 June 2007 - I am very pleased to announce that the Australian Government will provide the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) with a $25 million capital contribution towards the establishment of the Australian National Rugby Academy (ANRA) at Ballymore in Brisbane .
29 June 2007 - Given the extensive damage, I have authorised Commonwealth support in the form of cash payments to people who have suffered serious injury, or lost their principal place of residence or had that residence rendered uninhabitable for a period of 48 hours as a direct result of this disaster. This will be over and above the support being provided by the Australian Government under the long standing Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements . The additional relief will amount to $1,000 per eligible adult and $400 per eligible child.
29 June 2007 - Today I am pleased to mark the 20th birthday celebration of Red Nose Day. I urge all Australians to support the very important work of SIDS and Kids in reducing sudden and unexpected infant deaths across Australia . The Australian Government will contribute $80,000 to assist SIDS and Kids in raising awareness and helping prevent infant deaths.
28 June 2007 - I am pleased to announce today a $1.8 billion package of assistance for people with disabilities, their families and carers. This assistance will be available from 1 July 2007. It is on top of the $3.275 billion which the Commonwealth has already offered to the states and territories for delivery of disability services.
27 June 2007 - It gives me great pleasure to announce the outcome of Round One of the National School Chaplaincy Program. The overwhelming majority of schools made a strong case for the benefits that new or enhanced school chaplaincy services could provide to students in those schools. Accordingly, I have decided to allocate an extra $25 million to the program, enabling the Government to provide funding to 1392 schools in Round One, a total of almost $77 million over three years. This commitment brings the total value of the program to $115 million over three years and allows for $38 million to be allocated in Round Two. More than over 1500 applications from individual school communities were received for funding under this program of up to $20,000 for three years.
27 June 2007 - The Australian Government will provide up to $26.8 million for a new school to replace the current Amberley State School in Queensland .
27 June 2007 - I am pleased to announce with the Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, Mr Malcolm Turnbull, that the Queensland Government has satisfied funding conditions for the Australian Government's contribution of $408 million to the Western Corridor Recycled Water Scheme in south-east Queensland .
20 June 2007 - Reduced water allocations are placing great strain on many farmers and their communities. The Australian Government has put in place a range of new measures to support farmers and communities through this time. . The Country Women's Association (CWA) plays a valuable role in supporting drought-affected families across Australia . The government is providing an additional $8 million to the CWA to enable it to continue to distribute emergency grants to families for household essentials and to fund community activities and events to help boost the morale of drought affected communities. . For those eligible farmers that wish to re establish outside farming, the maximum FarmHelp re establishment grant has been increased from $50,000 to $75,000.
14 June 2007 - Prime Minister John Howard and NSW Premier Morris Iemma have agreed to additional assistance to help communities, small business owners and primary producers recover from the devastating damage caused by the floods in New South Wales . The Prime Minister and Premier Iemma announced the establishment of two $500,000 Community Recovery Funds with equal contributions from the State and Commonwealth.
10 June 2007 - The violent storm and subsequent flooding in the Central Coast and Hunter regions of New South Wales has caused extensive property damage and a significant number of fatalities. . Given the devastation, I have authorised Commonwealth support in the form of cash payments to people who have suffered serious injury, or lost their principal place of residence or had that residence rendered uninhabitable for a period of 48 hours as a direct result of this disaster. This will be over and above the support being provided by the Australian Government under the long standing Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements.
Money provided to make the Ghan a real gravy train.
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