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Thursday, 22 September 2011
Page: 11271


Mr DREYFUS (IsaacsCabinet Secretary and Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency) (09:52): I rise to speak about the recent opening of the discovery centre at Mordialloc College and the recent mobile offices that I have conducted in my electorate. Last Friday, I joined the Mordialloc College community to celebrate the official opening of the $2 million discovery centre, which was funded under the federal government's Building the Education Revolution program. The discovery centre was funded through the science and learning centre component of the BER program.

The centre's four wings are appropriately named to commemorate four notable Australian scientists: Elizabeth Blackburn, Fred Hollows, Howard Florey and Alan Walsh. The new science centre will provide over 800 students at Mordialloc College with a dedicated science facility that will transform the teaching of science at the college. The centre will deliver a high-quality open learning environment that is conducive to a more flexible approach to teaching.

The BER projects have delivered terrific benefits to our community, as I have previously outlined to the House. The diligence of the principals of the schools that have received funding from the BER program has been of a high level. It has been an absolute pleasure to work with all of the principals and the staff of the schools throughout my electorate over the past two years, from the initial notifications of funding through to the openings of their facilities. I want to congratulate Michelle Roberts, the principal of the college, and Lorraine Harris, the former principal, who was at Mordialloc College from 1991 to 2010, for all the hard work that they have put in on this project. They worked very closely with the builders and the project managers to ensure the successful completion of the project.

In addition to the funding provided for the discovery centre, the federal government has also provided Mordialloc College with $200,000 for refurbishment works and 150 computers through the Computers in Schools program.

In the past couple of weeks I have conducted my regular mobile offices in Mentone, Mordialloc, Chelsea, Aspendale Gardens, Parkdale, Chelsea Heights and Cheltenham. Mobile offices provide a great opportunity to meet with constituents who are otherwise unable to meet with me during the week due to work or family commitments. It was great to see some familiar faces and to talk about current federal issues, including the carbon price, the national disability insurance scheme and various local matters that are affecting residents of Isaacs. Despite all the hysterical antics of the opposition in recent times regarding the carbon price—exemplified by the wild misrepresentations of the member for Indi on her trips to my electorate and, more recently, to the Leichhardt office of the member for Grayndler—people were generally interested in getting the facts on how the carbon price will impact on them and why it is so important to take action on climate change now, and in particular the increases in pensions and the tax cuts that the carbon price regime is going to bring. People were interested to know more about the federal government's household assistance, the assistance that is going to be provided to families and pensioners, and of course the investments that the federal government will be making in renewable energy.