An interesting group of people attended a Country Labor Party dinner at the lovely home of Mr and Mrs Sorocynski, affording wonderful hospitality to the guest of honour Anthony Albanese.    He gave a speech in support of Damian Wood the Country Labor Candidate for the Federal seat of Cowper.   Forty people enjoyed the evening with a question and answer session over a splendid dinner served by our hosts.  Both guests of honour pledging to pay particular attention to Regional areas in all their needs. The successful dinner raised approx. $1,000.00

Jan Avey

Under the Gonski plan schools are allocated the right resources to meet the needs of all students regardless of their socio-economic background or geographic location. All schools are funded according to individual needs and what is required to educate all children to a high level.
An independent review of educational funding by David Gonski, a respected businessman, warned that too many children were missing out due to lack of resources. The Gonski report identified alarming gaps in achievement between students from different backgrounds. 
It is often stated that Australian standards of education are declining despite increased funding. The reality is that over the last 20 years, there has been a move to significantly increase funding to the private sector, including elite private schools, while depleting the public sector.
Another reason for the perceived decline is the difference in education systems and accessibility around the world. Most Asian countries, where often comparisons are drawn, don't provide education for all children as we do in Australia. At the other end of the scale most Scandinavian and European countries don't fund private education and this results in a strong public system catering for all students.
Many schools, public and private, in the Mid North Coast have benefitted from 'Gonski' funding resulting in increased capacity to support students who are educationally disadvantaged.

The school-based funding enables schools to:
employ additional specialist teachers and support staff in a range of areas such as literacy and numeracy,
provide greater assistance and support for students with learning difficulties, disabilities and behavioural problems,
access appropriate resources such as books, computers, equipment and facilities and
build the skills and knowledge of teachers through increased training.
Education for all children to a high level is necessary if we are to build a fair, healthy and wealthy society. If educational outcomes are linked to the wealth of parents, location or socio-economic background, Australia 
will not continue to develop a strong equitable society where all children have the opportunity to succeed and everyone has 'a fair go'. 

Jenni Andren


April Newsletter No 1.  2016


Branch motions

Prime Minister

The Hon Malcolm Turnbull MP

The Bellinger River branch of the ALP is greatly concerned with the debt cutting agenda of the current government, focusing on reducing income of people on fixed incomes, pensioners and low income earners whilst at the same time, neglecting to address the growing problems of tax evasion tax avoidance and tax exemptions.

The governments duty is to collect taxes from corporations who pay little tax or no tax at all and supernatural charities with tax exemptions, engaged in commercial enterprises competing with tax paying businesses

We ask for an immediate and comprehensive tax review to provide:

A fair taxation system for all Australians, a commitment to pursue tax evasion from corporations and individuals, to tackle corruption and end tax haven’s abuses.
In the case of supernatural charities organisations, they should be fiscally accountable for the income they earn as much as any other tax payer and the Tax Act should be amended accordingly. Tax deductions accorded for legitimate and proven welfare work only

Port Macquarie branch members with

Senator​  Jenny Mcallister

  Branch Profile    Port Macquarie 

The newest branch to join the Cowper electorate is Port Macquarie. It has a large and active membership.  Mark Hughes is the branch president, and he spoke about increasing branch members.

“We're proactive in the community on local issues,' said Mark. “Last year we had a huge success with a petition with what was known as, The Plaza Car Park. We got over 12,500 signatures in the space of four weeks. This involved a lot of engagement of our branch members with the community. We connected with Labor friendly people who were willing to step forward and say I want to be more involved.

Port Macquarie ALP  is now running a new petition to do with the rail. According to Mark, “We're starting to build a reputation as the go to group to get things done. This is a good thing.” 

Port Macquarie branch works hard to achieve this reputation. “At the moment we have a street stall manned with branch members five days a week, eight to nine hours a day. Every single business in a town like Wauchope are keen to run with our petition. These business owners are actually National Party supporters, and they know exactly who we are and what we're after”

In this election some of the issues that matter in Port are; 

Health - changes to bulk billing and pathology
Penalty rates in a place like Port which heavily relies on tourism is a big issue for working families,
Tax breaks for the rich and elite have a significant impact for the vast majority of people in port Macquarie who earn under $80 000 cap.