November 7, 2011
Murwillumbah District Business Chamber is asking businesses to come on board for the Murwillumbah Festival of Lights.
The event, which begins on 24th November with a gala opening at the Regent Cinema and Cafe, will showcase the beauty of Murwillumbah’s art deco architecture, whilst encouraging shoppers to shop locally for Christmas rather than spending their money out of the town.
The festival is designed to become an annual event where the businesses and the community celebrate together over the Christmas period.
Businesses will have to opportunity to enter a competition for the best commercial or window display, the most sustainable Christmas display and the people’s choice.
October 19, 2011
The campaign aims to point out the differences in subtropical bananas from tropical bananas and encourage people to support the local product.
October 13, 2011
The Member for Ballina, Don Page, is urging small business owners and operators in the Ballina electorate to meet the NSW Small Business Commissioner, Yasmin King, when she visits the region next week.
“As the former Shadow Minister for Small Business, I am very pleased to see the realisation of the policy that we took to the election to give small businesses an independent voice and advocacy,” Mr Page said.
“I am hoping a diverse range of small-business representatives will attend functions with Ms King at Byron Bay and Ballina so she can get an idea of what issues are concerning people in the Northern Rivers.
“This is an opportunity for local small business owners to speak directly to the Small Business Commissioner where they can directly express the pitfalls they encounter running a small business on the Far North Coast.
September 7, 2011
Ballina Shire and surrounding coastal areas are set for more economic growth with the announcement of a $3.5 million Federal Government grant towards the $4 million upgrade of Ballina Byron Gateway Airport.
Federal Minister for Regional Australia Simon Crean today announced that Ballina Shire Council’s funding application for the airport redevelopment had been successful in the first round of the Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF).
September 5, 2011
Page MP Janelle Saffin tomorrow (Tuesday, September 6) will host Federal Minister for Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government Simon Crean, who will lead a regional forum on carbon pricing and opportunities for the Northern Rivers.
Ms Saffin said she was delighted that one of the Gillard Government’s most senior ministers had accepted her invitation to come to Lismore to highlight the Clean Energy Future Package and carbon price mechanism.
“Simon will also be discussing opportunities for the Northern Rivers as Australia transitions to a low carbon economy,” Ms Saffin said.
“This is the Minister’s second visit to the seat of Page this year; in January he toured flood-affected areas of the Clarence Valley and met with local councils and emergency services agencies.”
August 3, 2011
Member for Ballina, Don Page, says he is pleased to see yet another election commitment delivered by the NSW Liberal and Nationals Government today.
“The NSW Liberals and Nationals developed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Clubs NSW prior to the March election,” Mr Page said.
“I was pleased to sign the MOU in December last year, and even happier today to see key aspects of that commitment delivered with legislation introduced to Parliament today.”
The Gaming Machine Tax Amendment Bill reduces tax paid by registered clubs and introduces changes to the Club Community Support Scheme.
“Local clubs in the Ballina Electorate currently donate more than $5 million annually to community groups and activities, and this will increase by an additional $112,000 from September 1 this year,” Mr Page said.
The new ClubGRANTS Scheme will provide an estimated $85 million, in additional community support across NSW from registered clubs over the next four years.
“The reduction in club taxes will save clubs in the Ballina electorate more than $300,000 a year,” Mr Page said
“Clubs make a major social and economic contribution to our local communities. They provide funding to community and sporting organisations, employment opportunities and high-quality facilities that are accessible and affordable for everyone.”
The 18 clubs in the Ballina Electorate employ more than 400 people and make significant contributions to the local economy.
Under the former State Labor Government, more than 100 clubs had to shut their doors due to tax increases.
Further reforms outlined in the MOU will be announced shortly.
“When a club in a small community is forced to close, it has an enormous impact. The NSW Liberal and Nationals want to support regional and rural communities and we understand the important role that clubs play. This legislation will help support clubs both large and small,” Mr Page said.
August 3, 2011
The 39 not-for-profit clubs across Ballina, Lismore, Grafton and Casino have appealed to the community to show their support for their clubs, and attend the Save our Clubs rally in Ballina next week.
Clubs across the Page electorate would be forced to spend more than $22 million to install the mandatory pre-commitment scheme being proposed by the Federal Government and Independent MP Andrew Wilkie.
As part of a deal with the Tasmanian independent MP Andrew Wilkie to stay in government, the Prime Minister says everyone will have to apply for a licence just so they can have a $5 punt on a poker machine.
Clubs Australia has invited Andrew Wilkie and Senator Nick Xenophon to attend the meeting so that they can hear about the economic and social importance of clubs in the area.
July 30, 2011
Ms Saffin, who last year successfully lobbied for early adoption of the network on the North Coast, will host a community NBN briefing at Ballina RSL Club on August 11.
Ms Saffin said NBN Co’s Community Relations Adviser Darren Rudd (pictured), who has extensive experience in global communications, would explain the economic and social benefits of super-fast broadband.
“Many businesses and individuals have contacted my offices in Lismore and Grafton, keen to take full advantage of the biggest nation-building project in Australia’s history,” Ms Saffin said.
“I lobbied hard with Southern Cross University, local government, business and the health sector to champion our submission in Canberra and Sydney for early adoption.
“And it was a real coup for our region last July when NBN Co CEO Mike Quigley announced Coffs Harbour as one of 19 second release sites.”
Ms Saffin said Coffs Harbour was selected on a range of technical criteria, and because of factors like the engagement of local government and the receptiveness of communities to broadband initiatives.
“NBN Co has identified Coffs is an area from which we can expect to see future rollout – extending and expanding the network – and my hope is that this will be to several centres in my electorate,” she said.
Ms Saffin also welcomed an agreement struck last month between NBN Co and Silcar Pty Ltd which enables NBN to prepare for the first large-scale deployment of optic fibre in New South Wales, including past premises in Coffs Harbour in the coming months.
Ms Saffin’s community briefing on NBN will be held in the Ballina RSL Club’s upstairs function room on Thursday, August 11, from 6.30pm. Bookings are essential and can be made by phoning Ms Saffin’s Lismore Electorate Office on 0266 219 909 by midday, Friday, August 5.
Ms Saffin is also hosting a luncheon briefing in Grafton on August 11 to update stakeholders who were involved in the original early adoption campaign.
BIO FOR DARREN RUDD:
Darren Rudd is currently the Advisor, Government Relations & External Affairs with a focus on Community Relations for Queensland, New South Wales, the Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory for the National Broadband Network Company (NBN Co). Prior to his role at NBN, Darren held leadership positions in Strategy, Operations, Program Management and Government Relations at Alcatel-Lucent across Asia Pacific for the previous 12 years. He has also built his career at AT&T Corporation, IBM and BHP both locally and with a number of international postings.
July 6, 2011
Over the past two years 153 farmers in the Northern Rivers Region have completed Biological Farming courses through TAFE Wollongbar as part of a SoilCare Inc project funded by the Australian Government’s Caring for Our Country Program.
According to SoilCare Chair Ms Bonnie Walker, only 27 more farmers have the opportunity to take advantage of funding for this course because the project finishes in 2012.
Ms Walker said: “The Biological Farming courses have been very popular and we find that farmers get very excited about soil health when they discover how they can take advantage of natural soil processes and soil biology to improve productivity and sustainability on their farms.”
July 6, 2011
Page MP Janelle Saffin has announced that the Lismore-based Northern Rivers Business Enterprise Centre (NORBEC) had been awarded a $100,000 grant to provide advisory services to local businesses affected by major flooding earlier this year.
Ms Saffin said many small businesses in urban centres and rural areas of her electorate were adversely affected by the floods last December and in January this year.
“The Clarence Valley was hit particularly hard by this flooding, as were parts of the Kyogle Shire and Richmond Valley,” Ms Saffin said.
“In addition, across the Northern Rivers, many small businesses in the tourism sector experienced significant loss of income from cancellation of bookings.