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Tuesday, 26 June 2012
Page: 8101

Ms O'NEILL (Robertson) (22:05): That is a very interesting claim, considering the member who represents those opposite wants to increase company tax—that is part of their mantra—and wanted to block our company tax cuts. After that anomalous thought, I would actually like to celebrate some wonderful things that are going on out in the Australian community. You would never know it from the contributions of those opposite, but the fact is that there are great thing going on, and there will be great things going on after 1 July as well.

One of the wonderful things that I recently attended was the 80th anniversary of the Woy Woy Country Women's Association. I want to pay tribute to all the people who were there celebrating alongside the ladies, but I will mention some particular names. Noela Bell, the president of the branch, hosted us. Diana Frost, the Northumberland group president, and treasurer Robyn Smith were in attendance. Cass Wailes, the secretary, and Heather Wootton were great organisers and were the MCs for the day. Barbara Atkins gave an amazing history of the CWA in the Woy Woy region, and we left the afternoon very enlightened. Member Zeta Connor was sick that day and unable to attend. Maud Crittenden attended. Maris Hartley, who gave her apologies, does wonderful cultural work for the CWA. Also in attendance were Edith Hyslop, Amy Peck and Colleen Smith. Kay Francis was on the door as part of the welcoming committee.

We had a truly wonderful afternoon at the CWA. I am very pleased to say that all the beautiful crockery on display was not provided by the ladies and was not washed up by the ladies and that the food served was not made by the ladies. They were treated and looked after on their birthday celebration.

Meanwhile, the Ocean Beach Surf Life Saving Club were preparing for the celebration of their 90th anniversary as one of the most prestigious surf-lifesaving clubs on the coast. Last year Katie Dixon was the state and Australian Surf Life Saver of the Year, and she was acknowledged at her home of Ocean Beach. Dave Unger was another recipient, of Australian Surf Sports Official of the Year. Some of the stats from the Ocean Beach club this year include: 72,000 visitors, 5,200 hours on patrol, 907 preventive actions, 10 rescues, 90 first-aid assistance actions and—the most important statistic of all—zero lives lost.

I want to mention some awardees. Sharon Bryant, who works for Australia Post, was acknowledged by the club for using her rescue skills from the surf-lifesaving centre to undertake a rescue while she was moving around the community on her motorbike on 12 September 2011. The members who put in the most hours during the year were as follows: Nigel Fitzgibbon, who led from the front as the director of patrol, put in 122½ hours; Jason Smith put in 107; Fritz van Aalderen, a life member also successful in the seniors category—so he has some experience on his side—put in 93; Jordan Smith put in 82½; and Caitlin Smith put in 80. The boat crew of the year, four fine young men with great camaraderie, were Luke McIntyre, Ashley Gassman, William Weekes and Jack Carroll. Darren Shaw was the most improved beach competitor—and he does not use those skills to run away from his responsibilities with the P&C at the Empire Bay Public School. The president's award went to Diane Mudge and Shirley Smith—he was unable to separate them—for their outstanding contribution to the community. The club person of the year was Elaine Unger.

The organisers of this great celebration had us wear the club colours, maroon and blue. I congratulate Lyn Smith, Shelley Smith and Elaine Unger on a very worthy acknowledgement of 90 years of amazing community service at one of the most beautiful beaches on the east coast of this great country. I follow that up with the regional awards for the surf lifesaving fraternity on the coast. They clocked up 895 lives saved and there were 8,559 preventative actions over the last season. Coach of the Year was Richard Brierty; Lifesaver of the Year Senior was Mark Davis and Lifesaver of the Year Junior was Madison McLeod; Volunteer of the Year was Lyn Smith; Assessor of the Year was Pam Edwards; Young Athlete of the Year was Rachelle King; Open Athlete of the Year was Lachlan Tame; Masters Athlete of the Year was Paul Lemmon; and Rookie of the Year was Shinah Tucker. There was also an award for club patrol competition, won by Ocean Beach. Bill Cook represented Umina Beach, the Club of the Year. Although we have the Central Coast extending a little bit further than my own boundary, into the seat of Dobell, I am pleased to say that Killcare, MacMasters, Umina Beach, Ocean Beach, Copacabana, Avoca, North Avoca and Terrigal— (Time expired)