Lots on the agenda for 45th Parliament

The Federal Member for Bendigo, Lisa Chesters, will return to Canberra on Monday for the official opening and first sitting week of the 45th Parliament with a long list of priorities for the Bendigo electorate, including Thales, CFA and the vital funding for local community infrastructure projects.

The City of Greater Bendigo has applied for funding for the Bendigo Tennis Centre and Bendigo RSL Soldiers Institute Revitalization projects through Round 3 of the National Stronger Regions Fund and is waiting on a decision. Goldfields Tourism have applied for $900,000 from the same fund to help the construction of the Harcourt Mountain Bike Park

“It’s time the Federal Liberal Government funded their fair share of these great projects as they mean a lot to our community. All three are waiting on the Federal Government to pay its fair share,” said Ms Chesters.

Ms Chesters is also seeking urgent meetings with Department of Defence representatives and the Minister to discuss why and how the decision was made to knock Bendigo Thales out of the Land 400 tender process.

"This was shocker of a decision by the new Minister for Defence Industries and the Turnbull Government and I question the timing. The 45th Parliament had not even been officially opened when this announcement was made.

"Bendigo Thales, their workforce and the Bendigo community deserves answers and I will do what I can to hold the Liberal Government to account,” said Ms Chesters.

Federal Member for Bendigo Lisa Chesters MP will also call for more time to consider the proposed Fair Work Act legislation dealing with the Victorian Country Fire Authority (CFA).

“Workplace relations policy and the Fair Work Act is a complex public policy area and I want the time to consult widely and broadly on any proposed changes. We have time. The proposed agreement is already the subject of a legal challenge in the Supreme Court of Victoria, scheduled for 22 September, and the Enterprise Agreement cannot be signed until that case is concluded.

“The CFA legislation should not be brought before the Parliament until that case is resolved and the Parliament can consider whether the legislation will have any effect at all on the CFA dispute,” said Ms Chesters.

The Federal Member for Bendigo also believes that social justice issues such as marriage equality, the Royal Commission into the Don Dale Youth Detention Centre and offshore processing of refugees will also be debated by the new parliament.

“What these issues have in common is that they are all human rights issues,” said Ms Chesters.