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Hello and welcome to my bulletin - a place you can find out all the latest news from Keppel and Parliament. I hope you enjoy this latest edition!
Cheers,

Brittany

In this edition

Voluntary Assisted Dying laws

I’m pleased to inform you that a bill to establish Voluntary Assisted Dying laws was introduced to Parliament last week.

The bill’s introduction fulfilled a commitment Premier Palaszczuk made to the people of Queensland prior to the state election in October.

For many, this will be the most important work this Parliament will do.

We’re also committed to delivering a $171 million investment in palliative care options. Many people who have watched a loved one suffer feel passionately that there must be a dignified alternative.

Equally there are those whose opposition is as deeply and sincerely felt.

That is why, when the time comes, Government MPs will vote according to their conscience.

The bill was introduced to Parliament and has been referred to the Health and Environment Committee for further public consultation.

I am hosting a VAD information forum, with guest speakers in Yeppoon on July 13. More details in the next newsletter.You can lodge your submission online email to hec@parliament.qld.gov.au

Meeting  the Ministers

Recently in Parliament I met with - 
  • Education Minister Grace Grace to update issues involving my electorate, my portfolio and my role as Assistant Education Minister.
  • Environment Minister Meaghan Scanlon about traffic and beach access permits to Farnborough Beach; and
  • Transport Minister Mark Bailey concerning school traffic issues.

Free school homework centres

I’m encouraging Central Queensland state schools to apply to be one of 120 new after-school homework centres in an industry leading, $8 million Palaszczuk Government commitment made at the 2020 election.

Parents can work with their principal and teachers to secure one of the homework centres, with the first to be operating for Term 3, beginning in July.

The Palaszczuk Government is investing $8 million over four years to fund centres in state primary and high schools, with onsite teacher-aides to supervise up to 24 students per session.

The sessions are free to students, not compulsory, and a healthy snack will also be provided.

These centres will operate for up to three hours per week, 30 weeks a year during term time.

PHOTO: Me with some of the great kids at Byfield State School.

New housing to meet social needs

Work on two new homes and nine apartments in the Keppel electorate is helping the Palaszczuk Government keep pace with an increasing demand for social housing in the region.

The $2.1 million project in Frenchville, due for completion soon, is part of an unprecedented social housing construction expansion in Central Queensland aimed at delivering 60 new homes over 5 years.

The Palaszczuk Government is investing the money for five x 1-bedroom and two x 2-bedroom apartments in the Frenchville project.

Other Keppel housing projects include:
  • 2 x 2-bedroom duplex units in Norman Gardens (completion date 2021-22),
  • 1 x 4 bedroom detached house in Emu Park (2021-22), and
  • 1 x 4 bedroom detached house in Norman Gardens (2021-22).
The new homes will provide safe, secure and affordable housing for those in Keppel who are in need.

There are currently 679 (up 5 from the previous quarter) social housing dwellings in my electorate, which takes in the Capricorn Coast and parts of North Rockhampton.
PHOTO: Albo and me at the Frenchville construction site for social housing.

New Correctional Centre officers 

I had the pleasure of representing Police and Corrective Services Minister Mark Ryan at a graduation of new Correctional Centre officers in Rockhampton last Friday.
The Capricornia Correctional Centre is a big employer in our region and it’s great the Palaszczuk Government is putting more resources into the Centre to keep control of inmates and to protect surrounding residents.

Dinner to celebrate Beef 2021

I had the pleasure of hosting 15 people at a post-Beef 2021 dinner in Parliament House.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, Agriculture Minister Mark Furner, Agriculture Director-General Mark Gee, Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke, and Beef 2021 officials were among those invited to attend.

It was a great get-together with good camaraderie and plenty of Beef 2021 success stories.
Not surprisingly beef was on the menu in the form of entrée Memphis Glazed 24 hour braised ox cheek, followed by a main of Darling Downs Wagyu rump cap, intercoastal fritters, Lockyer Valley smoked potato, two-day slow roasted beetroot.

It was also a chance for the Premier, Minister and me to thank the committee for their outstanding efforts in contributing to what is freely being called the best Beef Expo yet.

 PHOTO: It was good to catch up with former Rocky boy and ex-Wallabies skipper Stephen Moore at the Beef 2021

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P&C associations celebrated

The hard-working parents and citizens’ associations (P&Cs) across Central Queensland have been recognised on P&C Day celebrations last week.

I have a close relationship with many P&Cs in schools in Keppel and beyond, and I often thank them for their contributions to school communities.

I also acknowledge that they are dedicated volunteers who do so much to support local state schools.

P&C Day is all about acknowledging the hard work of these dedicated volunteers who do so much to support our local state schools.

Nominations for the 2021 P&C of the Year Awards are open with the winner to be announced in Brisbane in September.

Entries close 21 June 2021. Visit https://pandcsqld.com.au/whats-on/pc-year-awards/ to find out more.
PHOTO: Happy P&C Day! P&C Day is celebrated during National Volunteer Week. Here are two of the hard-working P&C members in Keppel - Katina and Toni are both dedicated to Yeppoon State High School's P&C. Thank you Katina and Toni and to all P&C volunteers across Queensland!

150th for St Lawrence State School

It was a special time in St Lawrence last weekend when they celebrated the St Lawrence State School’s 150th anniversary.
I was proud to represent Education Minister Grace Grace at the event.
It was an honour and a privilege to be with the St Lawrence community to celebrate the school’s long history.
Built in 1871 and unfortunately destroyed in a cyclone three years later, the school was built on resilience.
Over the years the school has not only been impacted by a cyclone, but also white ants, a fire, wood rot, sinking footings and many other challenges.
This school is the beating heart of the St Lawrence community and has been now for 150 amazing years.
 
Thank you so much to principal Molly Bendle; teacher Rebecca Shaw; Business Manager Wendy Counsell; teacher aides Maryanne Dalglish, Stacey Pownall, Jody Torkington and Caitlin Rankin; school chaplain Kari Morphy; grounds officer Glenn Brotherton; all of the 12 students, their parents and the entire St Lawrence community for hosting such a wonderful celebration of the school’s rich history.
PHOTO: Congratulations also to Miss Pete who painted this beautiful mural (97 hours spent in total!) of the school’s history.
Here’s to 150 more amazing years at St Lawrence State School!

Albo and Robbo. The launch

It was great to have Federal Labor leader Anthony Albanese here recently to launch the campaign of Russell Robertson who was chosen as Labor’s candidate for Capricornia in the next federal election.

Russell will stand up for Capricornia to grow jobs, fight for more affordable childcare, housing and for our local hospitals; he will stand up for us.

Russell was born in Rockhampton. He’s a third-generation coal miner.
 
Now he’s standing to represent his community in our nation’s Parliament as Labor’s candidate for Capricornia.

Working in the mines, Russell has seen firsthand what happens when you have a Federal Government that cares more about big mining companies than the Australians who are employed by them.

He’s seen what happens when labour hire firms trade away wages and conditions to pad out their profits at the expense of working people.

Russell will be a champion for Central Queenslanders. He will be your champion in Canberra. He’s on your side.

It was great to join Albo and Robbo and some of our true believers in Rockhampton for the launch and a get-together.

School traffic problems being addressed

Several schools are suffering growing pains at the moment, particularly regarding traffic and parking.

Taranganba State School is one of the biggest and had many traffic issues until the State Government responded with $1.1 million in funding to improve student safety by helping to solve its traffic woes.

It seems Frenchville SS and Parkhurst SS are also suffering, and I have met with both of them and taken their issues to Transport Minister Mark Bailey.

We’re working quickly and collaboratively to ensure the safety of everyone at these schools and ask particularly that drivers take special care around these schools.

Labor wins job security battle

As reported in The Courier-Mail, more than 3200 public servants have been reclassified as permanent staff under laws to give the state’s bureaucrats greater job security.

The majority were health workers and education staff.

Although workers from all but one department benefited from changes to the Public Service
Act that now allows workers to ask to be converted to permanent roles once they’ve been working there for a year.

The Public Service Commission said 3240 people had successfully argued for conversion since the laws came into place in September 2020.

This is great news for workers and recognises there are public servants who have been successfully fulfilling their jobs while employed on a temporary or casual basis.

The laws follow the independent Bridgman Review, which found “significant problems” with employment laws.

What was discussed in Parliament

  • Nature Conservation and Other Legislation (Indigenous Joint Management—Moreton Island) Amendment Bill (Brittany speech on this issue)
  • Ethics Committee report
  • Debt Reduction and Savings Bill (Brittany speech)
  • Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation (Tenant Rights) and other Legislation Amendment Bill.
  • Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Month
  • Health funding
  • Callide C power station
  • Beef 2021 (Brittany hosted a dinner of thanks)
  • Domestic and Family Violence
  • Social Housing
  • Defamation (Model Provisions) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021
  • Queensland Veterans' Council Bill
  • Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill
  • Environmental and Other Legislation (Reversal of Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures) Amendment Bill 2021

Latest Covid directions

For information on the Covid vaccine and its availability, go to COVID-19 vaccine | Health and wellbeing | Queensland Government www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alert


  Until next time



    Brittany

 

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KEPPEL ELECTORATE OFFICE
Shop 6, Yeppoon Central Shopping Centre
42 Park Street, Yeppoon QLD 4703
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