Saturday 12 October 2013

Hopeless EPA needs to have its prosecution powers removed

For many years have I been vocal in my criticism of the state's Environmental Protection Authority who I have considered to be a consistent failure in protecting the community from pollution.

I hold it responsible for the ground water and mercury contamination in this area. Its record of using its power to protect people from the vested interests is poor. Recently in parliament I referred to their failure to prosecute a serious environmental offender. You can see some of what I had to say on YouTube at the following link.

Serious environmental offences should be give to the Director of Public Prosecutions to bring these people to justice in the form of gaol penalties.

Botany Bay City thanks volunteers

Ron Hoenig MP, Magistrate Jacqueline Milledge
I was delighted to attend the Botany Bay City Council’s annual Thank you Dinner for Volunteers on Thursday evening at the Lakes Golf Club in Eastlakes.

It was truly overwhelming to see how many great volunteer groups and participants we have in this great local city of Botany.

The evening was all about recognising the wonderful people who give up their time for the benefit of others, who are selfless and want to make the community a great place to live in.

I believe volunteering is a great way to meet people, you get to know your local community, learn new skills, learn more about yourself, and help others who are less fortunate by contributing to a cause or a group that can make a real difference to someone or many people.

I would like to sincerely thank the following groups for their contribution, time and dedication; Meals on Wheels, SES, Access Committee, Senior Citizens Advisory Committee, Botany Historical Trust Executive and the local knitting group.

I was inspired to learn that most of the volunteers from one organisation were also volunteers for another organisation. These men and women are true heroes and our community would not be same without them.

I had the opportunity to present Ben Keneally, Mayor of Botany with a framed certificate that has been recorded in the NSW Parliamentary Hansard dedicated to the late Ms Nancy Hillier who was an environmental activist who fought on issues that were important to the community. Nancy also volunteered her time to many organisations; one of her favourite was the Botany Historical Trust. The certificate will be placed in the George Hanna Memorial Museum and Mascot Library.

I also made a presentation to Ms Jacqueline Milledge former President of the Botany Historical Trust. Jacqueline been a tireless worker for the trust and, despite enormous pressures in her role as a Local Court magistrate, she has given her time, energy and knowledge to documenting, preserving and celebrating the city of Botany Bay's fine history. I wanted to pay tribute to Her Honour and thank her sincerely for her service to the community.

I would like pay tribute to Botany Bay City Council for putting on this event, it is so important to recognise the tremendous work of volunteers and what inspiration they bring to our community.
 Ron Hoenig MP,  Caterina Taviani (Meals on Wheels)

Randwick Botany Little Athletics Season Opening

Ron Hoenig MP with Tony Vecillio OAM
Attending the Randwick Botany Little Athletics official opening of their 46th season at Hensley Field was a terrific event. It was very exciting to see hundreds of local children participating in competitive sports and having a good time; it was certainly a great example of community spirit

Not only was it the Little A’s official opening, it was also the March Past day where all the children from the tiny tots to under 17’s proudly marched from the 100 metre start line to the finish line of the track.

I was honoured to present the awards for Boys Captain, Boys vice-Captain, Girls Captain and Girls vice-Captain and congratulate the new leaders in their new role.

It is certainly an achievement of how long Little A’s have been going, 46 seasons and still going strong, this may be due to the dedicated and passionate leadership it has. Over the years competitors in Little A's have shown much promise and the club has a championship status that cannot be challenged.

I had the opportunity in presenting Tony Vecellio, OAM with a community recognition certificate that has been recorded in the NSW Parliamentary Hansard. Not only is Tony the President of Randwick Botany Little Athletics Centre; he is also described as its guiding light. Tony has served Randwick Botany Little Athletics for more than 40 years as its president, bringing much positivity and drive.

I would like to thank everyone that came along including all the competitors, marchers and volunteers. I would also like to thank the Mayor of Botany Bay City Council, Ben Keneally and Councillor Christina Curry for also coming along, presenting awards and showing their support to such a wonderful community organisation.
Mayor Ben Keneally, James Bassil (Boys Captain), Declan O’Connell (Boys vice-captain), Ron Hoenig MP, Stephanie Grujoski (Girls vice-captain), Taylor Minslow (Girls Captain), Councillor Christina Curry

Saturday 5 October 2013

Waterloo Public Housing Estate a disgrace - should be an embarrassment to the O'Farrell government

Ross Smith, Ron Hoenig MP, Sophie Cotsis MLC at Waterloo
This week I invited The Hon. Sophie Costis MLC, Shadow Minister for Housing to accompany Ross Smith, a People Precinct Representative, and I to see first hand the disgraceful living conditions that my constituents have to put up with in their Housing NSW tenancies in Waterloo.

I initially organised this tour so I could speak with my constituents' again. I wanted to ask whether there had been any improvements since my last visit and my many complaints to Housing NSW. I wanted to  get a first-hand account of any concerns or issues that were impacting on them.

As we walked through Raglan, Cooper, Wellington, Cope, George and McEvoy Streets I continually saw evidence of severe neglect and decay.

My constituents that are Housing NSW tenants are relegated to third world living conditions as evidenced by broken down fences, putrid garbage bays, rubbish strewn yards, syringe littered lawns and broken sewer pipes.

To see broken sewer pipes with toilet paper and faecal matter in a back yard of a block of flats, broken glass and syringes with mothers preventing their children from going outside to play is heart wrenching.

Talking to people, inspecting the inside of their mould infested units was just terrible One family cannot use the second bedroom for their two children because of the mould. Her children have to live in the living room. They had tried to fix it themselves, painted the room themselves and the mould goes through the paint. Housing NSW just refuse to help them.

The most inspiring part of our visit was to see how resilient these tenants are in the face of such terrible conditions.

They continue to strive to make the best of their living situation even in the face of such adversity.

I have vowed to keep fighting until these Housing NSW tenancies are given the attention that my constituents rightly deserve. The O'Farrell Liberals should hang their head in shame.