Rising Childcare costs

PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA: I rise to express my concern about changes that the government has made to childcare under the “National Quality Framework”. As of 1 Jan this year, childcare operators had to reduce their staff:child ratios from 5:1 to 4:1.  The impact of this has been to dramatically increase the cost of childcare to…

Condolence Motion for Sir Zelman Cowan

PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA:  I rise to add my comments to the condolences that we have heard today and yesterday on the passing of Sir Zelman Cowan on 8 December last year, the day that marked the 34th anniversary of his swearing in as Australia’s 19th Governor-General in 1977. Sir Zelman was a true giant in…

Reducing Small Business Compliance Burden

Alan Tudge MP, Federal Member for Aston, has called on the Gillard government to reduce small business red tape whilst speaking in the Parliament this week. Mr Tudge said, “The Coalition understands two things in relation to small business. The first is that small business is indeed the backbone of our economy and the second…

Support for CyberKnife Cancer Treatment

PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA:  I rise tonight to express my support for the introduction into Australia of a new cancer treatment called CyberKnife. This is a remarkable technology that has the capacity to save or improve the lives of hundreds of people who are suffering from cancer. In short, it provides a more targeted radiotherapy treatment…

Reducing Small Business Compliance Burden

PARLIAMENT HOUSE, CANBERRA:  I rise to speak on the Excise Amendment (Reducing Business Compliance Burden) Bill 2011 to express my support for its measures. We on this side of the House understand two things in relation to small business. The first is that small business is indeed the backbone of our economy. It employs millions…

A new deal for remote Indigenous Australians

PUBLISHED IN THE IPA REVIEW (Vol 63/4)There is a tacit deal for remote Indigenous Australians that is not working. Indigenous Australians have been supported for the last 40 years just to exist in a place of their choice, as a guilt-ridden nation’s act of compensation for past mistreatment. Low requirements of participation in education and…

The Industrial logjam holding our children back

PUBLISHED IN THE AUSTRALIAN:  While the change in Parliamentary Speaker was drowning other news, the Gillard government quietly dropped its promised teacher bonus scheme. Axing this clumsy add-on to the existing teacher salary structures was sensible, but the principle of merit pay remains essential to improving our schools. Wholesale reform is required. The existing system…