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  • Writer's pictureDave Layzell MP

State Matters - 14 August 2023


INFORMATION sessions on the proposed Lostock Dam to Glennies Creek Dam Pipeline Project are being held at Paterson and Singleton next week.

The drop-in information sessions are on Tuesday 22 August at Room 3 of Tocal Agricultural College and Wednesday 23 August at Singleton Public Library at 11am-1pm and 5-7pm.

The project proposal is currently in the early planning stages to enhance water security and reliability within the current system and support improved drought resilience and water connectivity in the Hunter Valley catchment.

For further details on the drop-in sessions and the proposed pipeline project go to:


Upper Hunter electorate residents can now make their own comparison of NSW Government cost of living assistance for transport costs.

NSW Labor has launched a 4 cent-per-litre fuel discount card for seniors at United service stations that can be used once a day for a purchase to a maximum of 150 litres in a single transaction.

Seniors Card and Senior Savers Card members can access the deal at participating United service stations by signing up online for a digital or plastic fuel discount card:

Applications for the $250 Regional Seniors Travel Card introduced by the previous NSW Liberals and Nationals Government were stopped in July.

To sign the petition supporting the retention of the travel card visit the website: and follow the prompts.


A state-wide ballot of nurses and midwives has endorsed the NSW Government government’s pay offer.

Nearly 60 per cent of NSW Nurses and Midwives’ Association members voted to receive a 4.5 per cent salary increase, including a 0.5 per cent rise in superannuation.

The NSW Government is continuing to work with other public sector unions on the resolution of other negotiations.

The state government’s wages cap will formally end in September.


An amendment will be made to the agritourism policy to make sure pick-your-own-fruit farms are allowed to operate with more than 100 visitors at a time without the need for planning approval.

The agritourism policy was introduced in December last year with the aim to make it easier for farmers to make secondary use of their land for agritourism.

Proposed changes were exhibited in early 2021 and further engagement with councils and industry informed the final policy.

The agritourism policy will be reviewed after a year of operation to make sure that the exemption is not leading to unintended consequences for local residents.

More information is available at the NSW Planning website:


Good to see Upper Hunter Country Tourism has launched a new magazine inviting visitors and locals to explore all the region has to offer.

The Spring/Summer first issue of Upper Hunter Country Magazine includes a preview of The Great Cattle Dog Muster Community Family Fun Day at Muswellbrook Showground on September 9.

There are profiles of the Upper Hunter’s towns and villages plus where you can find tourist information at the Visitor Information Centres in Muswellbrook, Denman, Merriwa, Murrurundi and Scone.

Edition one also has self drive itineraries for trips to the Barrington Tops, from Sandy Hollow to the Goulburn River National Park as well as around the local horse studs and vineyards.


TAFE NSW is holding a Virtual Open Day next week featuring webinars and a virtual exhibition hall.

Prospective students can explore courses, learn about support services, scholarships, degrees, pathway opportunities, flexible study options, enrolment support and much more.

Registration for the Virtual Open Day on Thursday 24 August is mandatory, so get in quick to secure your attendance at the event.

Participants need to have access to Google Chrome to attend and can expect an email

24 hours before the event which will include your event link and login details:

If you need further information drop into your local TAFE NSW campus or call 131601 to speak with TAFE staff.


Circle Sunday 8 October on your calendar because NSW Gone Fishing Day is on again!

It doesn’t matter if you haven't fished before or are the keenest of anglers, this event is for everyone.

The day, run in collaboration with the Australian Recreational Fishing Foundation, is supported by the Recreational Fishing Trusts and NSW Department of Primary Industries.

Applications are now open for clubs and organisations to apply for a Gone Fishing Day package with grant funding of up to $2,000 available to host events.

Grant applications close 8 September with forms and funding guidelines at:


Scone and Muswellbrook are set to have a 'taster event' when the national not-for-profit organisation, The Men's Table, pulls up a stump in the Upper Hunter electorate.

It’s dropping in to support men to have a good yarn, a good feed and share what is really going on - not to engage in the usual banter about footy, cars and horses etcetera.

Men’s Table supports building a safe and confidential space to encourage men to share and connect, peer-to-peer and community-led.

There are no fees - you just pay for your meal and drinks.

Register for the Royal Hotel Scone ‘taster’ on Wednesday 30 August at 6.15pm: and the Muswellbrook RSL event on Thursday 31 August at 6.15pm:

Find out more about The Men's Table at:


Save the Date and accept this as your public invitation to attend the 2024 NSW Seniors Festival, March 11-to-24.

The Premier's Gala Concerts and Seniors Festival Expo will be held at Sydney’s International Convention Centre on March 13 and 14.

Gala Concerts performers and ticket dates will be announced later in the year.

Applications are open for Seniors Festival grants with $200,000 funding available for local councils and not-for-profit organisations to run events and activities during the festival.

To apply before August 28, go to:


The prestigious Qantas Regional Grants program is set to deliver a boost to Aussie Ark and the Upper Hunter electorate.

The funds will be dedicated to further develop the accommodation in the Barrington Tops at Quoll Cottage and Devils Retreat, while simultaneously introducing new and immersive tour packages for visitors.

Aussie Ark's eco-tourism initiatives have the vital goal of generating funding for its crucial conservation efforts and opening-up an exciting new chapter in sustainable tourism.

Managing Director, Tim Faulkner, said the funds recognised Aussie Ark’s vital work and will undoubtedly propel the organisation further towards its vision of a thriving and ecologically balanced future.


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