Senator Abetz has today received a petition signed by almost 49,000 people on behalf of the friends and family of Tasmanian teenage bullying victim Chloe Fergusson.
Member for Bradfield, Paul Fletcher MP said he was delighted that 15 students from his electorate were today named as winners of the Australian Student Prize.
HOST: And with me on the program this Monday morning now, the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh and also the Parliamentary Secretary for Communications Paul Fletcher. Paul Fletcher, first to you, you’ve heard what Senator Xenophon had to say and his proposal, what is the government’s position on this?
PAUL FLETCHER: Well good morning, Kieran. The government’s position in relation to the Emissions Reduction Fund has consistently been that it’s in relation to domestic expenditure. So that point was made very clear for example in the white paper that was issued earlier this year. Now I think we heard Senator Xenophon there say that he’s put forward a proposal. He’s been in discussions with the Environment Minister Greg Hunt, as you’d expect. The Environment Minister Greg Hunt is in discussions with a range of independent senators, as you’d expect when we have a policy, and legislation we want to get through the Senate, which is directed towards achieving that 5% reduction target, achieving a reduction by 2020 on the 2000 levels of emissions in Australia, and our policy instrument to achieve that is the Direct Action policy. We’ve consistently advocated and pursued that policy for several years, two elections, and we are now obviously working to get the legislation through the Senate.
Host: Paul Fletcher, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications says the Government has held fifty meetings around Australia and has heard a similar message: focus on flood and fire prone areas, improve reception on the highways in case of accidents, and flat areas promise the best returns on investment but there are other priorities as well.
Paul Fletcher MP: Education, so a lot of people have talked to me about their concerns about their children being able to get online and then there’s all the economic factors and particularly obviously in agriculture as agriculture is increasingly such high tech sector: soil moisture monitoring, remotely opening and closing gates, water flowing into cattle drinking troughs, or the diagnostics on farm equipment on harvesters or tractors but all of that depends on connectivity.
HOST: You find yourself having to walk a few hundred metres, climb a fence and stand on a fence post just to find mobile reception at your place these days? It’s well known that there are number of mobile black spots in the south west, the problem that even received attention in the Keelty report in the Margret River Fires, but what do we do? The Federal government earlier this year announced $100 million dollar mobile phone black spot program, and this week marks the closing date for people to nominate locations for attention, but who can nominate, and what happens if you are successful? Paul Fletcher is the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications and he joins us this morning. Good morning Mr Fletcher.
Voiceover: But the Government’s research shows there is room for improvement
Paul Fletcher MP: One of the findings of that research was that it can still be difficult to get a response when you lodge a complaint with a social media site.
New research showing a dramatic increase in mobile internet use in regional and remote Australia highlights the importance of the Abbott Government’s policy to spend $100 million on fixing mobile black spots, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications Paul Fletcher MP has said.
HOST: This is AM Agenda, thanks for your company. With me this morning: Labor frontbencher Andrew Leigh and Liberal frontbencher Paul Fletcher. Paul, first to you in terms of Australian support of the US-led operation in Iraq. The prime minister says Australian support is likely and possibly by the end of the week.
PAUL FLETCHER: Yes, Kieran. Well good morning, and as the prime minister has said, indeed as president Barack Obama has said, this is a humanitarian disaster in northern Iraq, with thousands of people trapped on a mountainside, surrounded by the extraordinarily barbaric ISIS forces. The prime minister has said that the government is looking at whether we can assist in terms of humanitarian aid, particularly dropping food and water and so on. We have a couple of C-130s based in the UAE, and one of the questions is whether those might be made available, and the prime minster has said that there’ll be a decision on that within days, and as the prime minister has also said, there would be, I’d suggest, not many Australians who’d disagree, that if there’s a chance to go and assist in this humanitarian disaster that we would want to do that.