PAST and present Australian politicians
have paid tribute to former prime minister
Gough Whitlam (pictured) who died
yesterday aged 98.
Mr Whitlam served as prime minister
from 1972 until November 11, 1975
when governor-general Sir John Kerr
In his short period as prime minister Mr
Whitlam brought in sweeping changes to
social policy, education and health care
funding and encouraged multiculturalism
Former Labor prime minister Julia
Gillard said he transformed the nation.
‘‘He is alive in our universities and the
many lives he changed by giving free
access to university education, my life
included in that count,’’ she wrote in a
piece for the Guardian.
‘‘Alive in Medicare and the uniquely
Australian health system we now take for
granted. Alive in our suburbs and in our
family law. Alive in our suburbs and in our
Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten
paid tribute to Mr Whitlam in Parliament.
‘‘Regardless of one’s policies the nation
has lost a legend. He redefined our
country and in doing so he changed the
lives of a generation,’’ Mr Shorten said.
‘‘He reimagined Australia as a modern
nation where equality of opportunity
belonged to all.’’
Now the small dogs
can get a great run
All-sized fun: Cristine, Rhys and Natasha Benson with their dogs Byron and Kelso. They are excited to see the
new dedicated small-dog area at the Elderslie dog park.
Picture: Simon Bennett
SMALL dogs will be able to have their day every day at
the Elderslie off-leash area.
A new section specifically for smaller dogs will allow
little canines to enjoy the River Road park without having
to survive the rough and tumble of the bigger dogs.
Spring Farm resident and dog owner Cristine Benson
said dog parks like the Elderslie off-leash area were
important for dogs of all sizes.
‘‘It is especially good in this area where a lot of people
don’t have very big backyards,’’ she said.
‘‘It gets the dogs out of the house.’’
Camden mayor Lara Symkowiak said smaller dogs
would be able to ‘‘enjoy the facility without being over-
whelmed by larger dogs’’.
‘‘Fencing and signage has now been installed to
distinguish an area for dogs that have a maximum
shoulder height of 40 centimetres,’’ she said.
‘‘Council has also installed solar lighting at the facility
so that those who wish to exercise their dogs can do so
until 8pm, when the lights will automatically switch off.’’
Unions predict higher power bills
By Kerrie Armstrong
THE Macarthur Unions Group is
worried the NSW government’s plan
to offer for lease power poles and
wires could cost jobs.
The group is part of a campaign,
called Stop the NSW Power Selloff,
against the government’s plan,
which would see 49 per cent of the
poles and wires offered for lease and
infrastructure. Group member Lisa White said
the move would bring higher
electricity prices and job losses.
‘‘The provision of electricity is an
¦ Coalition defends electricity plan
essential service and I don’t think
that should be in private hands,’’
Mrs White said.
‘‘I think the government has a
responsibility for making sure it is
delivered safely and efficiently.’’
Mrs White said if the government’s
plan goes through, a private
company would be focused on
making a profit at the expense of
consumers and employees.
She said the government was
focused on the short-term financial
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gain over long-term consequences.
Endeavour Energy has two depots
in Macarthur, in Narellan and
Picton, and employs 177 people.
Camden MP Chris Patterson said
the former Labor government had
planned to lease call of the network.
‘‘It will be leased, not sold, and will
provide $20 billion worth of
infrastructure,’’ he said.
Wollondilly MP Jai Rowell said the
government had listened to the
community when finding money to
deal with an infrastructure backlog.
Mr Rowell said the government
would be taking the proposed poles
and wires lease to the public at the
‘‘We see infrastructure as an
important thing,’’ he said.
‘‘We listened to the community
and we’re not selling it, which was
Labor’s plan at some point in the
past,’’ he said.
Campbelltown MP Bryan Doyle
described the unions’ opposition to
the government’s plan as a ‘‘scare
campaign’’ and said the lease was
part of a commitment to rebuild
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