Memo from Mayo 25 October

25 Oct 2019

Welcome to our latest edition of Memo from Mayo.

It's been a busy fortnight in Parliament and a busy month in the electorate with the spring show season in full swing. If you haven't had a chance to visit one of our show stalls, we are at the Callington Show and the Houghton Fair this Sunday, the Kingscote Show on November 2 and the Uraidla Show on November 3.

I am also hosting NBN information sessions at Mylor and Meadows and a telecommunications scam awareness session at Victor Harbor in the coming weeks. And together with the Jodi Lee Foundation, we are hosting bowel cancer awareness presentations at Aldinga, Victor Harbor and Littlehampton in early November.

In late January 2020 I am planning to run a series of grant writing workshops. More information will be released later in the year. If you are looking at avenues for grant funding, please take the time to read my latest grant newsletter.

Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy reading about some of my work in the Parliament and our community.

New Clubrooms for Birdwood

Birdwood Netball Club has secured a grant for $105,000 to build new clubrooms thanks to Rebekha's advocacy.

The grant will augment the club’s own fundraising and in-kind community support to replace the old clubroom and also build a new storage shed.

Birdwood Netball Club President Ben Walsh said the funding would make a significant difference to players, officials and spectators.

“We would like to thank Rebekha Sharkie again for her wonderful support. She is for all communities in Mayo!” Ben said.

You can read more here.

Photo: Rebekha is pictured with Birdwood Netball Club officials Amanda Schapel, Ben Walsh and Shane Mudge.

Climate Action

Rebekha recently seconded a Private Member's Motion calling for a national strategy on climate change and agriculture that was introduced by the Independent Member for Indi, Helen Haines.

The motion included a push for comprehensive research, clean energy development, targets, and investment to help Australian farmers adapt to climate change and build rural community resilience.

You can read Rebekha's speech here.

Rebekha also joined the crossbench for a press conference when Noah Bell presented his e-petition to declare a climate emergency to Zali Steggall MP.

Noah, 23, collected 404,538 signatures, a record for a parliamentary e-petition.

You can watch part of the press conference here.

Photo: Noah Bell, centre, collected 404,538 signatures for his e-petition calling for the declaration of a climate emergency. Noah spoke at a press conference with the crossbench at Parliament House.

Low Fuel Stocks

During Question Time Rebekha asked the Federal Government when it would increase its automotive fuel stocks from 27 days “physically in the country” to the “recommended 90-day supply”.

“We are living in volatile times and a prudent Government would be planning for contingencies because it will be a matter of 'when' not 'if' an international incident occurs," Rebekha said.

“Australia has an International Energy Agency (IEA) obligation to hold 90 days' worth of automotive fuel in the event of market failure, but as of July 2019, we only had 27 days' supply physically in the country and 58 days’ worth of stock if you include contracts or purchased fuel in transit."

You can read Rebekha's press release here.

Top Teachers

Two teachers from Mayo have taken out the Prime Minister’s Prizes for Science.

Dr Samantha Moyle from Kangarilla, who teaches at Brighton Secondary School, received the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools, while Mrs Sarah Finney of Bridgewater, who teaches at Stirling East Primary School, was presented with the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools.

“Sam and Sarah are an inspiration to all young people but at a time when we know how important it is for our young women to see what they can be, these local women are shining examples of how science can be a rewarding and exciting career choice," Rebekha said.

You can read more about the awards here.

Photo: At Parliament House Rebekha caught up with Samantha Moyle from Kangarilla, who teaches at Brighton Secondary School and received the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Secondary Schools, and Sarah Finney of Bridgewater, who teaches at Stirling East Primary School and was presented with the Prime Minister’s Prize for Excellence in Science Teaching in Primary Schools.

Dairy Code of Conduct

Rebekha has welcomed the announcement by the Agricultural Minister, Senator Bridget McKenzie, of the early introduction of the mandatory code of conduct for the dairy industry.

"This is a measure designed to increase fairness and transparency between dairy farmers and processors. While the code is unlikely to be a silver bullet, as some in the industry believe that it will be, I hope that this will help to improve the precarious financial position of our dairy farmers, as detailed in the recent ABARES data on debt in the dairy industry," Rebekha said.

You can read Rebekha's speech about the code of conduct and the Farm Household Support Amendment (Relief Measures) Bill here.

Photo: Rebekha is with Section 28 artisan cheesemaker Kym Masters of Woodside who sources his milk from a dairy run by Mueller family in Mount Torrens.

Donation Reform Bill

Federal Parliament has decided to examine in more detail a Private Member’s Bill on political donation reform introduced by Rebekha.

The Commonwealth Electoral Amendment (Real Time Disclosure of Political Donations) Bill 2019, which seeks to introduce real-time reporting of donations, was recently referred to the Electoral Matters Committee for review.

You can read more in Rebekha's press release here.

Casino Inquiry

Rebekha recently joined the crossbench in calling for a Royal Commission into into allegations Crown Casino had engaged in money-laundering.

“If you donate $1000 you are a political party supporter. If you’re donating $1 million it’s fair to say you would expect something," Rebekha said.

“In just four years from 2013/14 to 2017/18 Crown Casino has donated $938,071 to the major parties.

“Is it any surprise none of the major parties supported our call today for a Royal Commission into the casino industry?”

You can read Rebekha's press release here.

Image: Donation data Crown Casino from the AEC’s Annual Returns database

Integrity Awards

Rebekha Sharkie has congratulated the Speaker of the House, Tony Smith, and former Independent MP Cathy McGowan on receiving Parliamentary Integrity Awards.

Rebekha nominated both Mr Smith, the Member for Casey, for the Accountability Round Table (ART) John Button Award and Ms McGowan, the former Member for Indi, for the ART Alan Missen Award.

“I was honoured to nominate both colleagues for these awards because they are true examples of public leaders who display honesty and integrity,” Rebekha said.

You can read Rebekha's press release here.

Photo:Rebekha with former Independent MP Cathy McGowan, who received a Parliamentary Integrity Award, and the Independent Member for Indi Helen Haines.

NBN Information Sessions

Rebekha is hosting two NBN information sessions at Mylor and Meadows in the coming weeks with NBN Co SA & NT Local Area Manager Kym Morgan.

With her Centre Alliance colleague Senator Stirling Griff, Rebekha is also hosting an telecommunications scam awareness session at Victor Harbor on November 6.

Rebekha will be joined by NBN & local SAPOL representatives to provide information to help residents identify and avoid scammers.

More information on Rebekha's website.

Cash Restrictions

Central Alliance has reserved its position on the Currency (Restrictions on the Use of Cash) Bill 2019 until a Senate inquiry into the legislation concludes but Rebekha has voted against the Bill in the House of Representatives.

"I have strong reservations about the legislation currently before Parliament. I know that cash can be a vehicle for money-laundering, but it is grossly unfair to label everyone who pays in cash as a criminal," Rebekha said.

You can read her full speech here.

Bowel Cancer Awareness

Rebekha and the Jodi Lee Foundation are hosting bowel cancer awareness presentations at Aldinga, Victor Harbor and Littlehampton.

More information is available on Rebekha's website.

Raise the Age

Rebekha has introduced a Private Members’ Bill to put pressure on the Government to follow a United Nations recommendation and raise the age of criminal responsibility in Australia from 10 to 14 years.

“Our current laws are not consistent with the medical and social science evidence we have about the mental capacity of children who commit offences and the detrimental effects early contact with the justice system have on our children,” Rebekha said.

“We also know that our current laws have a disproportionate impact on Indigenous children with almost 70 per cent of the young people in our youth jails being Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children."

Details about the Bill and Rebekha's press release is available here.

Photo: Cheryl Axleby, co-Chair of Change the Record, and Joel Clark from Amnesty International present their Raise the Age of Criminal Responsibility petition to Rebekha at Parliament House.

Sugars Beach proposal

Rebekha Sharkie has backed a plan by the Alexandrina Council to “sensitively develop” a beach near the Murray Mouth into an eco-tourism site.

The local MP has written to the State Environment Minister David Speirs to show her support for the council’s plan to improve facilities at Sugars Beach on Hindmarsh Island with public toilets, a shelter and an environmental and Ngarrindjeri information hub part of the concept plan.

You can read Rebekha's press release here.

Antartic Explorer

Rebekha met with environmental scientist Tim Jarvis AM during his recent visit to Federal Parliament.

In 1999 Tim went on an expedition to cross Antartica. Today he continues to campaign to create the East Antartic Marine Park.

Tim also has a Mayo connection. He owns a property at Myponga where he is conducting a revegetation program.

Photo: Environmental scientist Tim Jarvis and Rebekha.

School Visits to Canberra

Rebekha is pictured in the Mural Hall in Parliament House with senior students from Port Elliot Primary School during their recent trip to Canberra.

Rebekha is pictured at the Queens Terrace in Parliament House with senior students from St Catherine's School at Stirling.

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook