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  • Writer's pictureDave Layzell MP

State Matters - 3 October 2022


THE Upper Hunter Electorate will now have access to an innovative program that helps victim-survivors of domestic violence to stay safely in a home of their choice.

Staying Home Leaving Violence is being expanded to 14 additional local government areas across the state and for the first time Mid-Coast, Muswellbrook, Upper Hunter and Mid-Western council areas are included.

The program helps domestic violence victim-survivors stay closer to their family, friends, school and employment, while receiving support and the services they need to remain safe while they rebuild their lives.

For confidential advice, support and referrals, contact: 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732), The NSW Domestic Violence Line (1800 65 64 63), NSW Rape Crisis (1800 424 017) or Men's Referral Service (1300 766 491), however, in an emergency, call Triple Zero (000).


A reminder that outstanding Stay NSW and Parents NSW vouchers are set to expire on Sunday 9 October.

Stay NSW vouchers help support accommodation providers impacted by COVID-19.

Parents NSW vouchers reward and thank eligible households for their efforts to support learning from home last year.

NSW Government vouchers are non-transferable and can only be redeemed by the customer who was issued with the voucher.

They cannot be used as a gift or donation to a registered business and cannot be exchanged for cash or gift vouchers.

For more on the Stay NSW vouchers visit and for information on the Parents NSW vouchers


Service NSW and ID Support NSW are working closely with Transport for NSW to support affected Optus customers following the recent cyberattack on the company’s computer system.

Customers who have had both their driver licence number and associated card number compromised are strongly advised to apply for a replacement licence as soon as possible.

Optus customers who believe their information has been exposed can contact the company via the My Optus App or 133 937 for consumer customers and 133 343 for business customers.

NSW customers who need support regarding the replacement of identity documents and advice on preventative actions they can take, are encouraged to contact ID Support NSW on 1800 001040 and visit:


Eligible Aboriginal community organisations and groups can apply for NSW Government funding through the new solutions-focused $30 million Aboriginal Community and Place Grants program.

Up to $250,000 is available for one-off projects that will effectively empower Aboriginal communities to drive social, tangible change.

The grants are targeted to support projects at a grassroots level and may include skills development programs for Aboriginal community members, IT upgrades for organisations, office equipment and the purchase Infrastructure to enhance accessibility and mobility.

For more information, guidelines and to apply, visit the Aboriginal Affairs NSW website before 5pm Friday, October 14:


Families are being encouraged to take advantage of the state’s Active Kids Voucher program so children can get back to sport during summer without breaking the family budget.

School-enrolled children can access two $100 Active Kids vouchers each year towards the cost of sport and active recreation fees with over 11,000 Active Kids providers across the state.

The Active Kids program is one of more than 70 Government savings to help ease cost of living and boost household budgets.

Find more about Active Kids at:


Local councils will share in $15 million from the Crown Land Flood Recovery Fund to repair crucial Crown land features damaged during the February and March flood events.

The money will be used to help clean-up, repair and restore smaller community assets on Crown Land such as parks, playgrounds, reserves, visitor and cultural sites and Crown roads, bridges, drains and other structures.

Applications are open until 14 October, after which they will be assessed by the Department of Planning and Environment – Crown Lands to determine the amount of funding to be allocated to each local council.

Local councils are advised to contact the Crown Lands Flood Recovery Program:


The NSW State Emergency Service (SES) has adopted the new Australian Warning System as the official Storm Season begins.

While storms and floods are experienced year-round and there is currently an increased risk of damaging weather in the months ahead, the highest period of danger stretches from the beginning of October to the end of March.

The new Australian Warning System has three tiers of warnings: Advice; Watch and Act; and Emergency Warning.

Warnings during storms and flood events will continue to be distributed through text message alerts, the SES website, SES social media channels, ABC radio stations and media outlets.

For more on the Australian Warning System:


Regional NSW’s division of Mining, Exploration and Geoscience is progressing a range of reforms which support the responsible development of the state’s mineral resources.

The draft of the proposed Mining Amendment Regulation 2022 and the draft of the proposed Petroleum (Onshore) Amendment Regulation 2022 are now available for public comment.

Key Regulation updates include allowing for hydrogen and non-metals to be regulated under the Mining Act 1992, updating definitions for the prescribed standard conditions of mining leases, clarifying the application of conditions related to the rehabilitation of land within mining leases and other rehabilitation of land obligations.


A consultation paper has been released by the NSW Sentencing Council calling for submissions on whether laws about fraud sentencing should change, and how.

In September 2021, Attorney General Mark Speakman requested the Sentencing Council review sentencing for fraud and fraud-related offences and to make any recommendations for reform it considers appropriate.

After preliminary consultations, the independent expert body has developed and is now seeking input across 14 key areas for reform.

The Sentencing Council’s consultation paper outlines the key fraud and fraud-related offences and sentences that currently exist in NSW and asks whether these adequately address the needs of victims and the motivations of offenders.

The consultation paper and details on how to make a submission by Friday, 4 November can be found on the Sentencing Council website;


The NSW Police Rural Crime Prevention Team is encouraging landholders to be vigilant when it comes to people trespassing on their property as crops flower during spring.

Members of the public are reminded not to enter onto any private property for the purpose of taking photographs as you are potentially introducing biosecurity risks onto farmland.

There are a number of offences people can be prosecuted for under the Biosecurity Act, however, to successfully prosecute people under this act, properties need to have an up to date biosecurity plan and biosecurity signs at access points to their property.

Should members of the public be detected trespassing on private property in contravention of a biosecurity management plan, police will take action and courts can impose fines of up to $220000.

To report trespassing contact NSW Police on 131 444 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.


Gone Fishing NSW Day is just around the corner, so mark Sunday 9 October in your calendar and get ready for some serious fishing fun!

But, remember use a rod or hand line after a court delivered a strong deterrent for unlawful fish traps.

It followed an incident in far western NSW, where two men were approached by Fisheries Officers following a period of surveillance regarding a number of unlawful traps.

The officers were obstructed in the exercise of their duties and the two men failed to comply with lawful requirements made of them during the course of the interaction.

Both men were convicted in the Local Court and the Magistrate imposed fines for the offending with one man fined a total of $9,600 and the other a total of $8,000.

Members of the public can provide confidential information regarding illegal fishing activity by reporting to Fishers Watch on freecall 1800 043 536 or online at


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