WELCOME to a new monthly column in The Tweed Valley Independent where I will keep readers up to date about State issues which affect Murwillumbah and surrounds, and the wider electorate of Lismore.
Firstly, let me say it is an honour to be your representative in the New South Wales Parliament, and just as I did when Federal Member for Page, I want to make a real difference for our communities into the future.
My job is to ensure that I do everything I can to improve the lives of all residents across my 13,020-square-kilometre electorate, including Murwillumbah, parts of the Tweed Valley and local villages.
Last Friday, I had the privilege to attend and speak at Tweed Shire Council’s citizenship ceremony held in the Murwillumbah Civic Centre, where 28 people from 13 different countries became Australian citizens.
The breakdown was Canada 1, China 4, Colombia 1, India 2, Ireland 1, Italy 2, Kazakhstan 1, New Zealand 3, Phillipines 1, Russia 3, Tonga 1, United Kingdom 7 and the United States 1.
Carole Goodwin, personal assistant to Tweed Mayor Cr. Katie Milne and councillors, organises 4 or 5 of these ceremonies each year and says it is a favourite part of her job.
“The new citizens, friends and family are so happy to have reached this point. It is a big deal for them and a big deal for us,” Carole says.
I treat it as a big deal as well because obtaining Australian citizenship is a serious commitment but so worth the effort, particularly when it adds more hard-working individuals and families to our diverse nation.
Last week was National Volunteers Week and I thank all of our volunteers who give their time, energy and skills to improving the lives of others across the electorate of Lismore. Each and every day I see the amazing results of their good work. Good work that makes our community a caring one.
Volunteer groups and organisations can apply for a new grant to help them prepare for natural disasters like floods and bushfires, with applications open from last week until July 16, 2019.
The NSW Government has made $750,000 available under the Emergency Volunteer Support Scheme and applications can be made through the online portal at the NSW Office of Emergency Management.
The office’s grants until can provide further assistance on (02) 9212 9251