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Tuesday, 9 November 1976
Page: 2497

Mr Les McMahon (SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) -Mr Speaker,with the Minister for Social Security (Senator Guilfoyle) over the last 6 months there has been an exchange of correspondence concerning 2 important projects in the electorate of Sydney. These projects, one for the South Sydney Municipal Council and the other for the Leichhardt Municipal Council are for welfare centres. The South Sydney Municipal Council has an architect's estimate of the cost of one project- the renovation of the Reg Cope Welfare Centre which has been in existence for approximately 20 years. Reg Cope is a brother of the former Speaker of this House, Mr Jim Cope. The total cost of the project, is estimated to be $214,000. The property is at 55 Pitt Street, Redfern. It was transferred to the Council on its incorporation in 1968 from the Council of the City of Sydney. There is no trouble about the title. The property is situated within a residential (2)b zone. The unimproved capital value is $26,000 as at 3 June 1975. The Council will provide its share of the project cost from its general revenue fund. There is a plan indicating the location of the Reg Cope Welfare Centre.

The area is well serviced by bus transport to bring patients to the centre and the centre services residents who are within walking distance. The project is designed to provide dining and welfare facilities for approximately 130 persons daily. Daily activities at the existing centre include cards, television, housie, library and indoor bowls. It is proposed to extend these activities to the new building and to introduce arts and crafts and social events- activities now precluded because of the inadequate accommodation within the existing building. It is considered that there will be no future need to expand the premises. The Council is already operating 4 other welfare centres within the municipality. The 4 centres are the Ron Williams Welfare Centre, the Gordon Ibbett Welfare Centre, the Harry Burland Welfare Centre and the Cliff Nobel Welfare Centre. I do hope that the Minister for Social Security in her wisdom will agree to the allocation of this amount of $214,000. It will help the Reg Cope Welfare Centre in South Sydney.

There are 2 welfare centres in Leichhardt. One is the Harry Hannaford Welfare Centre. The Council originally decided to buy the property on 15 July 1975. On 18 August 1975 the Council asked the architect to make a report and to prepare a scheme for the conversion of the property to an aged persons centre. The Council received a plan on 15 September 1975. It applied to the Under-Secretary of the Department of Local Government on 24 September 1975. It enclosed the architect's report on the scheme and it was agreed to. The Council advised that the total preliminary cost would amount to $165,480 of which the amount of $55,000 was Council's contribution and was the cost of the land. The Council then asked the State Government for a subsidy of $2 for every $1 under the States Grants (Home Care) Act 1969-73. The estimates went to the State Department of Local Government and were forwarded to the Commonwealth Department of Social Security. While waiting for the subsidy, the Council started to carry on with the work. At this stage it has spent $70,000 including $55,000 for the cost of the land.

We expect there will be a deputation of South Sydney aldermen, the Mayor of South Sydney, Leichhardt aldermen and the Mayor of Leichhardt to meet the Minister for Social Security in connection with these worthy projects for the older people in the area of Sydney. We would like a sympathetic reply. The City of Sydney has 5 welfare centres. South Sydney has four and the Leichhardt Council has two. I think that consideration should be given to granting these extra few dollars to help the older people of the electorate.

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