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Wednesday, 8 February 2012
Page: 268

Mr CROOK (O'Connor) (13:55): Two weeks ago I travelled into the Great Southern and south-west regions of my electorate to meet with local residents, small businesses and community leaders about issues important to their region. Over the course of a week I visited the communities of Katanning, Kojonup, Boyup Brook, Manjimup and Bridgetown. In Katanning, I had the opportunity to visit the new sheep saleyards construction project, a $22 million project jointly funded by the state and the federal government. I spent Australia Day in Bridgetown—a cool 41-degree day!—where I had the opportunity to welcome new citizens Andrew and Sue Brown; their two young children, Sophie and Dylan; and their dog, Jasper, into Australia. I would like to extend a welcome to all new Australian citizens across O'Connor, across regional Western Australia and right across the nation.

I would also like to thank Pat Scallan, the unofficial mayor of Greenbushes, for giving up his time on Australia Day to take me on a tour of his lovely town. Greenbushes is a particularly proactive regional town located just 150 metres from a major mining operation. I was particularly impressed with the Greenbushes Discovery Centre, an interactive museum with displays highlighting the mining and forestry industries in the south-west. I thank all the residents who took time to meet me and raise their concerns and issues with me while I was in the area.