top of page
  • Writer's pictureDave Layzell MP

State Matters - 1 May 2023


A SIGNIFICANT week on the health calendar with attention focussed on Heart Week - Australia’s national heart health awareness campaign.

In New South Wales, more than 14,000 people died from cardiovascular disease in 2021, and it’s a number that continues to rise each year.

During this opening week of May take 30 minutes for a Heart Health Check with three simple steps to keep your heart healthy.

We are encouraged to measure our blood pressure, calculate our heart age using the Heart Age Calculator and book a Heart Health Check with your GP.

Don't delay prevention, discover more at:


The state’s workplace injury insurer, icare, has been directed by the NSW Government to limit average premium increases to 8 per cent in each of the next three financial years.

Currently the average premium rate is 1.48 per cent of wages, well below both the break-even point of 1.91 per cent and the national average of 1.7 per cent.

An individual employer will be charged a premium dependent on a number of factors including the industry of the employer, the total wages paid and the employer’s claims experience.

Employers can contact icare for specific enquiries about their premium on 13 44 22, Monday to Friday 7am-7pm.


Essential Energy is contacting customers it has identified that may benefit from the installation of a Stand Alone Power System (SAPS) on their property.

The program, which will roll out over the next several years, provides an independent power system comprising solar panels, a battery and a back-up diesel generator to the premises without relying on an overhead network connection.

SAPS can reduce unplanned power supply outages and will be tailored to meet specific power and location needs with the customer able to approve the final placement location on their property.

Customers will not pay any additional costs for having a system installed on their property as Essential Energy will own the system and any upgrade will be voluntary for customers if it is determined that it will meet their current and future needs.

Essential Energy customers can learn more at:


The NSW Government has launched the second phase of the Local Land Services (LLS) graduate program to future-proof the ranks of field veterinarians.

Graduates will be mentored by experienced LLS veterinarians, as well as biosecurity officers, and put their studies into practice working alongside the state’s farming community.

Six veterinary graduate roles are available across the Central West, Northern Tablelands, Greater Sydney, South East and Western Local Land Services regions.

Recruitment for additional agriculture and natural resource management graduates will occur from July this year onwards.

Veterinarian graduate recruitment closes 14 May with more information available or to apply for one of the positions visit:


Webinars are available this month for parents and carers with children itching to jump on the social media bandwagon.

The eSafety Commissioner’s free webinars will help equip adults with the skills to support their kids as they navigate privacy and sharing online.

The live 30-minute webinars suitable for parents and carers of young people in primary and secondary school cover a broad range of topics delivered by an expert education and training team.

The Term 2 National Families Week program, May 15-21, includes eSafety 101, Getting started with social media, Setting your child up for success online as well as Online relationships and consent.

Sign up now for the free webinars at:


NSW businesses and workers are urged to follow forklift safety guidelines after five deaths following over 1,500 serious forklift related incidents between 2017 and 2022.

Incidents include forklifts being involved in collisions, rollovers, and objects falling off forklifts which often resulted in very serious and life changing consequences.

To ensure workers are protected, SafeWork Inspectors will visit businesses to check on forklift compliance and provide education on issues including licencing, traffic management, seatbelts and forklift safety.

SafeWork NSW is also offering rebates of up to $1,000 through its Small Business Rebate Program to enable local small businesses to implement safety improvements.

For more including safety videos and fact sheets check-in at:


The Upper Hunter Electorate and some neighbour areas are in the spotlight for wild dog and fox control being conducted across May and June.

Hunter Local Land Services (LLS) and the NSW Forestry Corporation are carrying out 1080 poison aerial and ground baiting during the two-month operation.

Aerial baiting is scheduled for the Merriwa, Singleton, Dungog, Nowendoc, Nundle and surrounding areas and involves private property, State Forests, Crown Land and Travelling Stock Routes.

The aerial baiting will be accompanied by a large-scale ground baiting program prompting LLS and Forestry to warn landholders, neighbours and visitors not to enter baiting areas with domestic pets and that working dogs should be muzzled.

Call Hunter LLS offices at Paterson, Singleton, Merriwa, Scone and Taree on 1300 795 299 or email for further information.


The Community War Memorials Fund is now taking applications with $125,000 funding currently available for the protection and repair of war memorials.

Administered through the NSW Office for Veterans Affairs, the program supports the conservation, repair and protection of local memorials throughout the state.

Community groups can apply for up to $10,000 funding to go towards condition assessments, specialist cleaning and repairs which are all important aspects of how the places of commemoration that help us acknowledge our military history are managed.

The current round of the Community War Memorials Fund closes on 25 July for memorials listed on the NSW War Memorials Register:


WaterNSW is encouraging residents living near its dams to be part of the Early Warning Network (EWN) so they are kept up to date in the event of a significant dam release or emergency.

Registering with EWN means you will be notified via SMS or email and you can choose the dam(s) you would like to be contacted about and which notifications you wish to receive.

It is important to register as many contact details as possible so WaterNSW has multiple ways to alert you in an emergency.

If you register a landline number, you will be called on that number by the system, whatever the time the alert is issued.

Water account users on iWAS are not automatically enrolled to the EWN.


NSW Police have recently taken to social media to support SafeWork NSW in highlighting the need for increased attention to safety when using side-by-side vehicles (SSVs).

SafeWork reports that a seat belt was not worn in 13 out of 13 SSV fatalities in NSW between 2017 and 2020.

The advice from police is to wear a seatbelt, wear a helmet and never carry passengers in the rear cargo area of SSVs.

If there's a collision or rollover, your seat belt helps keep you secured inside the vehicle and protects you from serious or fatal injuries.

SafeWorkhas produced a Quad bike and SSV safe use toolkit which is a free guide for farm managers and vehicle operators:


bottom of page