Premier in Print in Print

OVER recent weeks there have been some extraordinary claims made about plans for the future of King Edward Memorial Hospital.

Once and for all, I want to make the government’s position on this clear. That is, King Edward Memorial Hospital is staying where it is.

It will not be relocated, it will not be closed and it will remain as a centre of excellence in its field. It will be continually upgraded and provide the highest standards of medical care and attention for women and babies from all over Western Australia.

At the same time, the government is continuing with our strategy of providing more health facilities outside the CBD so people can have good public health care closer to their homes.

This is one of the government’s key strategies and we have built, and are continuing to build, new hospitals in areas including Joondalup, Bunbury, the Peel area and Armadale as well as upgrading other facilities.

These new and improved facilities are a huge benefit for people who would previously have had to travel long distances to get to the major teaching hospitals clustered together near Perth and Fremantle.

GOOD education is another responsibility that is absolutely critical for our State’s future and a range of initiatives are bringing good results in both the private and public sectors.

One of the latest of these is the new $12 million Murdoch College, a joint venture between the Alexander Educa-tion Group and Murdoch University that will cater for up to 900 local students in Years Eight to Twelve.

The college, which took its first students at the start of this year, is built on the Murdoch University Campus, giving students all the benefits of a new school campus with the advantage of an early taste of university life.

I have no doubt education is going to be one of WA’s most rapidly growing export businesses and this college is an early promise of what is to come.

A SHORT break from Parliament this month gave me the chance to visit some of the wheatbelt and coastal towns in the mid-west.

Travelling through the area and meeting people in towns including Carnamah, Cervantes, Eneabba, Jurien, Green head and Leeman again highlighted the diversity that exists in our State.

Agriculture, mining and fishing are all strong sectors in the area and tourism is developing strongly.

No doubt this will be boosted by the completion of the new twenty-three kilometre section of sealed road along the coast between Jurien and Cervantes.

It is a beautiful scenic link between the two towns and cuts about thirty kilometres off the old journey.

It is also the second last link in the ongoing Indian Ocean Drive project that will link the important fishing communities between Lancelin and Dongara, as well as being a magnificent coastal tourism attraction.

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