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WESTERN Australia is making major advances in how we deliver and present our State’s services to people through the Internet.

Our new ‘onlinewa’ site is one of the most comprehensive Internet sites in Australia, providing a single doorway into every State Government department that is currently online.

It also gives easy access to many other non-government services including holiday planning, cinema guides and news programs.

Regional representatives at the recent launch of the site commented that one of the big advantages for them is that they can pay many of their bills through the site.

These include electricity, gas, water and car licence registrations at any time of the day or night, every day of the week.

They can also track down a lot of other information and get answers they need without having to travel to the city.

One of the design features of the site, www.onlinewa.com.au, is that it has been planned so people can use it without having to know specifics about which government agency delivers which service.

With seventy-four agencies currently linked into the site and more to come, this is a huge benefit.



THE State Government will continue to subsidise light-alcohol beer even though we will not receive any revenue from liquor excise from 1 July.

The cost of the subsidy will be covered by the State’s share of GST revenues and guarantee payments from the Commonwealth under the national tax reform arrangements.

The decision to continue the subsidy, which currently costs the State about $7 million a year, is in line with our bid to encourage responsible alcohol consumption.

It makes good sense to continue with the subsidy and give the lower-strength beers a price advantage.

We will be working in consultation with industry on the new subsidy arrangements.



IT IS very pleasing that Lieutenant-General John Sanderson has agreed to take on the important role of Western Australia’s Governor and will soon return to our State with his wife, Lorraine.

Western Australians can be proud to have gained the services of Lieutenant-General Sanderson, a distinguished and highly decorated Australian who was born in Geraldton and educated in Bunbury.

His forty years in the army included an extensive range of military and operational appointments, culminating in the command of the Australian Army as Chief of the General Staff and Chief of the Army from 1995 to 1998.

We look forward to welcoming him back to his home State to take on the challenge of his new role.

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