Pictured above: Federal Shadow Minister for Communications David Coleman MP and Vice President of MIRRA Ewe Cheng Khoo following a telecomminications meeting held at Peppers.
On Thursday 8th June Shadow Minister for Communications David Coleman MP met with members to discuss the telecommunications issues on the island, poor internet services and telephone black spots. Mr. Coleman provided very valuable information to those present at the meeting, with further discussions continuing.
The meeting with the Minister follows on from the June MIRRA meeting where Federal Member for Herbert Phillip Thompson MP and Casie Scott from NBN were present.
Ms. Scott told the group the Regional Upgrade Program was continuing which included free installation and a recent upgrade called Skymuster Plus Premium providing much faster speeds. In the longer term she was trying to get the island onto NBN’s Regional Connectivity Program which recently achieved 4 million dollar funding for the Julia Creek area and major work is in process at Palm Island. She also said that fixed wireless was the best option for the island using a series of towers to ensure all inhabited areas were covered.
Phillip Thompson then spoke about Telecommunications, Pharmacy issues & Insurance.
On the Pharmacy problem he is working with the Government to try to achieve a compromise being no Pharmacy closures while supplying cheaper medicines to those in need.
He also said he was pressuring the TCC to contact the Government to request black spot funding.
On home insurance costs he said only Allianz and Sure had so far signed up for the re-insurance pool and all other companies had until the end of the year to join-up.
In response to a question about the Monash system for deciding remote and rural needs for health, he said he will re-visit this with the new Health Minister.
He also spoke of other issues facing the electorate including:
Crime generally and especially juvenile crime and the Fed. Govt. was responsible for funding safety issues.
On a question about the ever increasing transport costs for residents, he said he would look at how other islands dealt with this and report back.