Andrew Fraser's Coffs Harbour catch up
As usual, it has been a busy start to the year for the Coffs Harbour electorate. With the weather still warm, the region has seen an influx of visitors over the Easter and school holiday break, who were able to enjoy our wonderful beaches and beautiful hinterland before the winter season.
In January this year, I had the great pleasure of welcoming 19 new medical interns who commenced their one-year internship at the Coffs Harbour Health Campus. I am sure these fine young men and women will enjoy working in this area and hopefully, at the end of their internship, they will make the decision to continue their clinical work in the region.
On the topic of health, it was also my great pleasure to open a new ‘pink’ digital mammography system located at Beachside Radiology. This state-of-the-art medical imaging system is designed to provide excellent image quality while making the patient as comfortable as possible during the breast exam. It is wonderful to have yet another addition to women’s health care in the Coffs Harbour electorate.
The Coffs Harbour Health campus is to be expanded and I was pleased to announce that a lead design team has been appointed. The $156 million expansion will see upgrades to the existing surgical and operating theatres as well as new theatres, a new short stay surgical unit, orthopaedic and vascular unit, ambulatory care area and the expansion of community health services.
In addition, planning has commenced for a new and upgraded Ambulance Station. The new purpose built station will enable local NSW Ambulance paramedics to better meet the current and future emergency mobile care needs of the constituents of the Coffs Harbour electorate.
In March, I welcomed the Deputy Premier, John Barilaro and Minister for Planning, Anthony Roberts to Coffs Harbour to launch the State Government's North Coast Regional Plan.
This bold plan will be used as a guide for planning priorities and land use decisions in the region over the next 20 years and aims to increase connectivity between our local communities.
The popularity of this region has seen a rapid growth in local communities and with a projected population increase of more than 75,000 people in the next 20 years. This plan will go a long way in meeting the needs of this growing population.
As the NSW Government pushes ahead with decentralisation. I welcomed the recent announcement of a new TAFE SkillsPoint headquarters for the Coffs Harbour electorate. The Tourism and Experiences Services headquarters is one of six new regional headquarters and will help create the tourism and experience-services workforce of the future by collaborating with business and industry.
Upgrading work is continuing on the north wall at the Coffs Harbour Jetty which will make the area more accessible and ensure the harbour is protected from tidal surges.
I was also very pleased to announce that the Sawtell Surf Club has been granted $306,000 in funding as part of the 2016/17 Surf Club Facility Program. This funding will see additional storage and a new main operations room for the Club, which is a vital part of the dynamic Sawtell community.
Planning is continuing for the return of the World Rally Championships to the Coffs Coast from 16 to 19 November this year. This event sees a huge influx of both interstate and international visitors to the region. The event is broadcast to over 46 million viewers worldwide and it is a wonderful opportunity to showcase our region to the world. I am very pleased that the local community has embraced this event.
I’m very proud of what has been achieved in the Coffs Harbour electorate but there is still more to do. I will continue to work for the local community to deliver real outcomes for our region.
Member for Coffs Harbour