Latest media releases
This is a list of the latest media releases from Australian Government websites arranged under their portfolios. It is generated daily from new media releases collected overnight.
This list was generated on Friday, Oct 31 2014.
- Infrastructure and Regional Development
- Prime Minister and Cabinet
- Social Services
A man has been charged with drug offences by the Joint Organised Crime Group (JOCG) after attempting to import 17 kilograms of cocaine concealed inside dough rollers. The JOCG is a multiagency investigation group comprising the NSW Police Force (NSWPF), Australian Federal Police (AFP), Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACBPS), NSW Crime Commission (NSWCC) and the Australian Crime Commission (ACC). The Commander of the NSW Police Force's Organised Crime Squad, Detective Superintendent Scott Cook, said his officers were working closer than ever with their Commonwealth counterparts to combat major drug syndicates targeting the Australian market.
The Parliament has today passed the Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (Foreign Fighters) Bill. This Bill provides important measures that will enhance the capability of our law enforcement, intelligence and border protection agencies to keep Australians safe. This Bill will provide our law enforcement and security agencies with the tools they need to disrupt terrorist attacks on our soil, help prevent the recruitment of others to fight overseas, and hamper revenue raising for terrorist organisations.
ACT school students, Australian Federal Police (AFP) members, and Bruce and Denise Morcombe will support today's annual `Day for Daniel' events, walking around Lake Burley Griffin to raise awareness of child safety, protection and harm prevention throughout the territory. 'We are very excited to be hosting Bruce and Denise Morcombe this year for the ACT Walk for Daniel in support of the Daniel Morcombe Foundation,' Acting Deputy Commissioner Zuccato said. The Daniel Morcombe Foundation was established by Bruce and Denise Morcombe following the abduction of their son Daniel from the side of the road in Palmwoods, Queensland in 2003.
The Hon George Brandis QC. The Government has introduced the Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment (Data Retention) Bill 2014 (the Bill), an important next step in giving our law enforcement and security agencies the tools they need to keep Australia safe. The Bill will require Australian telecommunications companies to keep for two years a limited set of metadata which is information about the circumstances of a communication as opposed to the content of a communication.
Australia's surviving Victoria Cross recipients, together with the parents of the late Corporal Cameron Baird, VC, MG, Mr and Mrs Doug and Kaye Baird, met with Queen Elizabeth II on Tuesday (London time) as part of the 28th Victoria Cross and George Cross Reunion held biennially in London. Her Majesty The Queen hosted nine Victoria Cross and 12 George Cross recipients at Buckingham Palace, including Australian Army soldiers Corporal Mark Donaldson, VC, Corporal Ben Roberts-Smith, VC, MG, and Corporal Dan Keighran, VC. Other Australians attending the 28th Victoria Cross and George Cross Reunion include former Army soldier Mr Keith Payne VC, OAM, Victoria Police officer Mr Michael Pratt, GC, and Lady Joan Cutler, widow of Sir Roden Cutler, VC, AK, KCMG, KCVO, CBE.
Welcome to Parliament House. Today, the internet will be a big part of the Music: Count Us In celebrations. The evolution of online music and music education has been rapid.
Half a million students take part in Australia's largest school sing-a-long | Ministers' Media Centre
Senator the Hon Scott Ryan, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Education, welcomed 850 ACT students to Parliament House as part of Australia's largest school sing-a-long, the 2014 national celebration for Music: Count Us In. The ACT school students were joined by 500 000 students from around Australia who participated in the live-streamed event. Five students from around Australia were selected to write this year's song with mentor, Harry James Angus from The Cat Empire and Music: Count Us In programme ambassador, John Foreman.
Mackay commercial net fishers are showing their support for the Great Barrier Reef by joining the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's Reef Guardians program. Mackay locals Mark and Debbie Ahern are among the first net fishers to join the program, which sees GBRMPA and commercial net fishers work together to identify best fishing practices to protect the inshore environment. The commercial net fishers join fellow reef line fishers, marine aquarium fishers and coral collectors that are part of the Reef Guardians program.
Media Release 111/14 - Medibank Private Broker Firm Offer exceeds expectations $12 billion in bids received $1.5 billion allocated
The Medibank Private Share Offer has reached another milestone with the successful completion of the Broker Firm Offer, which saw the submission of $11.987 billion in binding bids by brokers for allocations of Medibank Private shares. The Government is pleased to announce that eligible Australian and New Zealand brokers who bid for a firm allocation of shares on behalf of their retail clients have been allocated $1.5 billion of Medibank Private shares. Consistent with the advice in the Medibank Private Share Offer prospectus, the shares allocated to the Broker Firm Offer may be subject to a further clawback of up to 20 per cent, following completion of the Institutional Offer.
A new National Asthma Strategy will be developed to address the toll the condition has on the lives of more than two million Australians. PDF printable version of New National Plan to Tackle the Impact of Asthma (PDF 240 KB). A new National Asthma Strategy will be developed to address the toll the condition has on the lives of more than two million Australians.
Australian industry will benefit from annual savings of $83.5 million through lower compliance costs with the repeal of unnecessary and counterproductive legislation and regulation. This reduction in red tape in the Industry portfolio alone will deliver an $83.5 million benefit to Australian industry through lower costs for paperwork and complying with red tape, giving the business community more time to focus on building Australia's productivity, Mr Macfarlane said. Other industry savings measures include:.
ANSTO is home of some of Australia's best environmental scientists, and has decades of experience in studying air quality and different types of air particle pollutants.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Research Council (ARC), Professor Aidan Byrne, has welcomed the Australian Government's discussion paper Boosting the Commercial Returns from Research. 'The ARC's newest funding scheme, the Industrial Transformation Research Program, is also showing its effectiveness in creating coordination of research and industry partners through its research hubs and training centres. 'While it is vital that a commitment to pure and applied research is maintained within the Australian research funding model, the ARC welcomes a commitment to ensure that together, research and industry, pave a greater future for all Australians,' Professor Byrne said.
Infrastructure and Regional Development
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss today welcomed the appointment of Air Vice Marshal (Retd) Mark Skidmore AM as the new Director of Aviation Safety at the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). 'I look forward to working with Mark, the CASA Board and industry as the Government implements its response to the Aviation Safety Regulatory Review due to be released before the end of the year,' Mr Truss said. The new Director of Aviation Safety was chosen by the Board after an international search.
Mr Mark Skidmore AM has been appointed as the new Director of Aviation Safety at the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). Mark Skidmore brings a wealth of aviation experience to the position of Director of Aviation Safety at CASA, Dr Hawke said. 2001-2012 Royal Australian Air Force from 2008 Air Commander Australia previously: Joint Force Air Component Commander including Director of the Coalition Combined Air Operations Centre in the Middle East Area, Director Combined Air and Space Operations Centre, Director Operational Requirements, New Air Combat Capability Commander, Aircraft Research and Development Unit.
Prime Minister and Cabinet
The Australian Government is investing $2 million over two years to establish a Specialised Indigenous Ranger Programme to strengthen the compliance and enforcement powers of Indigenous rangers in Far North Queensland and the Torres Strait. The programme will create five new Indigenous compliance officer positions, up to three Indigenous permitting officer positions and provide compliance training for up to 20 Indigenous rangers as part of the Government's $5 million Dugong and Turtle Protection Plan. The Government will fund four full-time Indigenous compliance officer positions at the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority to carry out compliance activities and support compliance training for up to 20 Indigenous rangers.
It is disappointing that the Shadow Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Shayne Neumann, and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary, Warren Snowdon, have accused Indigenous men and women who are committed to seeing children in their communities attend school as being part of a truancy army flop'. Not only did Neumann and Snowdon slam the work of the 570 on-the-ground school attendance officers and supervisors, they also got the facts wrong on the performance of the Government's Remote School Attendance Strategy, Minister Scullion said. Considering this, it would be highly surprising if Indigenous school attendance made a quantum leap in one year.
The Governor-General has appointed Mr Michael Thawley AO as Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet for a period of five years commencing 1 December 2014. He has also held a number of senior Australian government positions including in the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Office of National Assessments. Dr Watt has had a long and distinguished career at the highest levels of the Australian Public Service including appointments as the Secretary of the Departments of Communications, Finance, Defence and the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.
Denis Napthine Premier of Victoria. A new national working group will be established to tackle the increasing impact of illegal offshore wagering on Australian racing and sports. Federal Minister for Social Services Kevin Andrews and Premier of Victoria and Minister for Racing Denis Napthine announced the working group saying it was critical to stamp out illegal offshore wagering.
The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Social Services, Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, has appointed three new members to the National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters (NAATI) Board. Senator Fierravanti-Wells said NAATI assists Australia's diverse and changing communication needs and expectations.. Senator Fierravanti-Wells congratulated the new members on their appointments.
Toys R Us Australia Pty Ltd (Toys R Us) has paid a penalty of $10,200 after the issue of an infringement notice by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission in relation to the supply of Nantucket 4-in-1' household cots that did not comply with the mandatory safety standard. Toys R Us operates over 30 Toys R Us and Babies R Us stores throughout Australia, as well as an online Toys R Us store. Toys R Us recalled the Nantucket cots after testing obtained by the ACCC identified that the cots did not comply with the safety standard and that there was a risk of injury or death to infants from the cots, including from falls, entrapment or suffocation.
Today's roundtable of peak bodies representing the whole of the automotive industry supply and service chain and consumers agreed on an action plan to finalise principles on the sharing of information and technical specifications. Once settled, the Heads of Agreement will establish the structure around which individual industry associations will develop more detailed voluntary codes to bring the agreement into operation within each specific industry sectors. This welcomed progress on agreeing an industry wide Heads of Agreement will be supported with input from the ACCC and the federal Treasury.
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) today released a prudential practice guide that provides guidance on good practices for insurers in relation to group insurance arrangements. Prudential Practice Guide LPG 270 Group Insurance Arrangements (LPG 270) outlines prudent practices in relation to group insurance arrangements with a focus on life insurance provided to Registrable Superannuation Entity (RSE) licensees. The release of this prudential practice guide reflects APRA's heightened focus on group insurance and forms part of APRA's response to issues in both the superannuation and life industries,' Mr Laughlin said.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has granted authorisation until 31 December 2019 to allow the Jewellers Association of Australia (JAA) to work with members to establish and operate a retail tenancy database. The database will provide de-identified information about the terms and conditions of retail leases entered into by members of the JAA. Authorisation provides statutory protection from court action for conduct that might otherwise raise concerns under the competition provisions of the Competition and Consumer Act (2010) Further information is available at: Jewellers Association of Australia - Authorisation.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has released its 16th annual container stevedoring monitoring report. Increased competition is delivering improvements in Australian stevedoring, which build on significant gains in the industry since the waterfront reforms of 1998. The ACCC began monitoring stevedoring in 1998-99.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's annual report for 201314 shows the ACCC was involved in 53 proceedings relating to consumer protection enforcement, increased competition enforcement and sent strong deterrence messages by securing over $12 million in penalties and other remedies during the year. A total of 267 recalls of consumer goods were received by the ACCC in 201314. The ACCC AER Annual Report 201314 is available on the ACCC website: ACCC & AER annual report 2013-14.