House debates

Monday, 2 May 2016


Durack Electorate

9:04 pm

Photo of Melissa PriceMelissa Price (Durack, Liberal Party) Share this | | Hansard source

As a proud member of the Fremantle Football Club, I know far too much about losing at the moment, so I certainly have quite a bit in common with the Wanderers at the moment. But well done to Adelaide, in any event.

I am pleased to talk about some of my major achievements since being elected at the 2013 election. Before I was elected, I promised to be a strong voice for Durack and for regional Western Australia and I believe I have delivered. Some 470 kilometres north of Geraldton, is the beautiful town of Carnarvon. It is a beautiful tropical town and a great tourist destination for the thousands of tourists who visit there every year. Known for its banana plantations, Carnarvon is so much more with its divine seafood, tropical fruits and wonderful weather—not to mention being close to the Ningaloo Reef; Shark Bay, which is world heritage listed; and the Kennedy Ranges.

Unfortunately, owing to the town's geographical location, Carnarvon is prone to cyclones and flooding. In mid-2014 I announced the federal government would provide $15 million towards the Carnarvon flood mitigation stage 2 project, which would reduce future flood damage to the town. This project constructed a series of four integrated earth and rock levees, which give Carnarvon the security it needs to expand the town's important horticultural industry. It also involves irrigation to protect community assets from water damage. The Carnarvon flood mitigation stage 2 project is a vital project, and I am very glad indeed that the federal government has made a significant contribution to this important project.

In December last year I was very happy to announce that the Turnbull government would contribute $10 million to the Karratha Arts and Community Precinct. Make no bones about it: this is a very important community project in the Pilbara. The precinct consists of a state of the art library, multifunctional theatre, modern outdoor amphitheatre and a war memorial. The library includes a professional research and education development zone, office space and personalised visitor centre services within the amenity. The precinct also features a stunning rooftop terrace for cinema and outdoor door events. You might say, 'Well that all sounds very fancy,' but let me tell you that this is a community where little girls would struggle to find a hall in which to perform a ballet class on Saturday morning. So it is actually incredibly significant for this community.

This project is a magnificent boon for the Pilbara. I am very proud to be contributing to this. It will be a game changer for not just Karratha but the Pilbara more generally. Whilst we are in the region of Karratha, the Turnbull government has also provided a $2 million grant for the restoration of the Victoria Hotel in Roebourne.

In June last year I announced a massive boost to Durack's mobile telecommunications reception, through round 1 of the Mobile Black Spot Program. A massive 123 of the 183 black spots nominated by local Durack residents will be addressed, with 45 new or upgraded base stations in Durack, courtesy of the $41 million package—a $10 million package from the Turnbull government. As you can imagine, this is fantastic news for Durack, which has over 300 towns and communities. For many people it is on a scale that is very difficult to put into words.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service is another very valuable organisation. I was very honoured to secure a $2.7 million grant for their Broome base, which I shall be opening very shortly I am very proud to say. This government is keeping the Anzac Day spirit alive in Durack, with over $130,000 worth of projects through the Anzac Centenary Local Grants Program.

As a Liberal who does care about the environment, I look at the over $1.5 million in funding in the 20 Million Trees Program, which I have delivered in Durack, and the 20 or so Green Army projects which play a role in beautifying our environment, preserving and restoring natural habitats in the many towns throughout Durack as well as, more importantly, providing young people an opportunity to learn conservation and preservation environmental skills.

Just a few weeks ago I announced over $3.3 million worth of black spot funding to fix dangerous roads, and eight black spots will be fixed as a result. This includes the Hamersley Street and Napier Terrace intersection in Broome and the stretch of the Indian Ocean Drive from the Lakes Road to north of Coorow-Green Head Road. Of course, this announcement is on top of the other seven black spots I announced that will be fixed under the black spot program earlier this year.

This is just a small snapshot of some of my major achievements since being elected. Some may say it is a solid start, but I emphasise that this is a start only and I have plenty more I still want to achieve in the largest electorate in Australia.