State Matters - 4 April 2022
NEW ENGLAND HIGHWAY FUNDING
CONSTRUCTION of the Muswellbrook Bypass is a step closer after funding for the New England Highway was announced in the Commonwealth Budget.
The bypass to take highway traffic out of the town, improve travel times for long distance truck movements and safety for all road users secured $268.8 million in last week’s budget.
Transport for NSW is working towards finalising the design so early work on the bypass can start in late-2022.
Planning to duplicate the New England Highway between Muswellbrook and Singleton attracted $8 million from the Commonwealth to scope and develop works for the upgrade.
NSW Treasury is now examining the details of the Commonwealth Budget which will feed into the upcoming NSW 2022-23 State Budget.
NSW Education is reminding staff and students not to attend school if they are showing any symptoms of COVID-19.
Schools are aligned with community settings of ‘symptomatic testing’ only and the department continues to support the use of Rapid Antigen Tests for symptomatic testing until at least the end of Term One.
If a student or staff member is unwell and has any COVID-19 symptoms they should always test for COVID-19 before leaving home.
If the test comes back negative for COVID-19, the student should still not return to school until either they no longer have any symptoms or a medical certificate is provided to the school confirming that symptoms are explained by another diagnosis.
COVID-smart arrangements are available at: www.education.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/advice-for-families
People wanting to assist flood victims continue to be encouraged to use official donations channels to ensure flood-affected communities receive support without overwhelming on-the-ground service providers.
Since the start of March, 54,000 critical items valued at $620,000, have been donated and distributed to flood-affected communities through online donation hub GIVIT.
Critical items like family-sized tents, fuel vouchers, groceries, furniture, whitegoods and clothing are being delivered to flood-affected households.
The NSW Government’s arrangement with GIVIT allows councils, local charities and community groups to request exactly what they need.
GIVIT then works to meet the needs through an online warehouse or by purchasing requested items locally using donations.
Donate to GIVIT’s storm and flood appeal: www.givit.org.au/storms-and-flooding
DIGITAL TRADE LICENCES
Tradies can now easily access their work licences for free allowing contractors and consumers to quickly check credentials.
The NSW Government has launched the digital individual contractor licence in the Service NSW app after a successful trial of more than 1,400 tradespeople.
Security features of the digital licence include an animated NSW Government logo, auto-refreshing date and time, QR code that expires and reloads and a Waratah hologram.
The new licence app strengthens consumer safeguards adding another layer of protection by allowing consumers to quickly check details such as name, date of issue and any conditions.
DIGITAL VEHICLE REGISTRATION
A fully digitised, paperless vehicle registration service has been launched by the NSW Government.
The new Digital Vehicle Registration service is a one-stop shop for millions of drivers, offering digital renewal notifications and a Certificate of Registration all in one place.
Through the new service, motorists can opt-in to get electronic reminder notices and access their digital Certificate of Registration through their MyServiceNSW Account
Customers who opt-in will receive reminder notifications six and two weeks before their registration expires and one day after via email, in their MyServiceNSW account and by push notifications in the Service NSW app.
The service is optional meaning customers will continue to receive a paper renewal notice unless they opt-in.
For more on the Digital Vehicle Registration opt-in visit: www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/digital-vehicle-registration
TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE?
Car buyers are being warned about odometer tampering after a four-fold increase in the number of fines issued for the offence in NSW.
As used motor vehicle sales have risen amid the COVID-19 pandemic, so too have incidents of odometer fraud where perpetrators wind back the mileage or replace the odometer with one showing fewer kilometres.
In one case a seller shaved off more than 400,000km from a 2012 vehicle whilst in another example the odometer reading on a 2009 vehicle was lowered by about 280,000km.
It is important to see the registration paperwork and proof of ownership of the vehicle, as well as meet the owner and sight their identification.
Also, have the vehicle inspected by a licensed repairer and conduct a Personal Property Securities Register check (PPSR) or buy a vehicle history check.
To report suspected odometer tampering visit: www.service.nsw.gov.au/transaction/report-suspected-odometer-tampering
For advice when buying a vehicle check: www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au/cars-and-other-vehicles/buying-and-selling-a-car/before-you-buy-a-car
SERVICE NSW VISITS
The Service NSW Mobile Service Centre visits the Upper Hunter Electorate this month.
First stop on Thursday 7 April is outside the Uniting Church Stroud, 10am-3pm.
Scone, at the Upper Hunter Shire Council office on 12 April, 9am-4pm.
Driver testing will be conducted by prior appointment at Stroud and Scone.
The Mobile Service Centre stops at the Murrurundi Visitor Information Centre and Community Connect on 13 April, 10am-3pm.
Junction Park, Werris Creek is the location for the mobile centre between 10am and 3pm on 27 April.
Applications for Dine & Discover vouchers and the Regional Seniors Travel Card,
processing of RSA and RCG cards, driver licence, vehicle registration and Working With Children Checks are among the range of services available.
For more information call 13 77 88 or visit: www.service.nsw.gov.au/campaign/mobile-service-centres
Registrations for the Healthy and Active for Life online program provided by NSW Health will close on Friday 15 April.
The free 10 week program offers online healthy eating and lifestyle sessions for people aged 60 years and over and Aboriginal people aged 45 and over.
The program will help you learn how to make small, sustainable changes in your lifestyle to improve your health.
For more information about the program and how to register visit: www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au