Cyclone Yasi, Soldier’s Death, Egypt: Today’s Briefings

  • Assistant Treasurer Bill Shorten – Flood Insurance. (8m)

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  • 1.50pm AEDT – Opposition Leader Tony Abbott. (8m)

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  • 1.30pm AEDT – Queensland Emergency Services Minister Neil Roberts. (17m)

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  • 11.35am AEDT – Prime Minister Julia Gillard. (25m)

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  • 10.30am AEDT – Queensland Premier Anna Bligh. (32m)

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  • 10.00am AEDT – Lt. Gen. David Hurley announces the death of another Australian soldier in Afghanistan. (9m)

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Cyclone Yasi About To Hit: Bligh And Gillard Speak

Cyclone Yasi is about to hit far north Queensland and Premier Anna Bligh and Prime Minister Julia Gillard have spoken at press conferences to offer advice and support to people in the cyclone’s path.

Julia Gillard

  • Listen to Gillard’s press conference. (20m)

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  • [Read more…]


Today’s Political Activity

  • Queensland Premier Anna Bligh held a series of press conferences today to provide information about Cyclone Yasi. This one was at 2pm. (16m)

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  • Bligh held another press conference at 4.30pm with Commissioner Ian Stewart. (9m)

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  • Leader of the House Anthony Albanese brief the media on arrangements for next week’s return of Federal Parliament. (14m)

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  • In light of the government’s agreement with Andrew Wilkie, Families Minister Jenny Macklin released legal advice provided to the government on its powers to deal with problem gambling. (8m)

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  • Assistant Treasurer Bill Shorten spoke about flood insurance. (5m)

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  • Prime Minister Julia Gillard addressed CEDA on her vision for Australia. (25m) – Transcript of Gillard’s speech is here.

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  • Stephen Smith and Jason Clare made a series of announcements about Defence procurement. (36m) – Transcript of Smith and Clare is here.

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Flood Levy Debate: Don’t Patronise Me, Neil

The debate over the Gillard government’s flood levy got willing today as the Prime Minister clashed with Neil Mitchell on Melbourne radio station 3AW.

Towards the end of the interview, Gillard and Mitchell clashed over Cabinet support for the levy and oversight of the flood recovery spending.

  • Listen to Gillard and Mitchell: “Don’t patronise me, Neil.” (3m)

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  • For the complete context of the encounter, listen to the complete Gillard-Mitchell interview. (20m) – transcript below.

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Later in the morning, Queensland Premier Anna Bligh and Treasurer Andrew Fraser held a press conference to outline infrastructure rebuilding plans.

  • Listen to Bligh and Fraser. (26m)

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In a speech this afternoon to the CEO Institute in Brisbane, the Federal Treasurer, Wayne Swan, defended the government’s plan for the flood levy. He argued that in a growing economy it is important “to pay your way as you go”. Swan said it would have been irresponsible to borrow to fund the rebuilding program.

  • Listen to Wayne Swan’s speech. (25m)

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Transcript of Julia Gillard’s interview with Neil Mitchell.

GILLARD:

Good morning, Neil.

MITCHELL:

Thank you very much for your time. I appreciate it. Prime Minister, with your Government’s history of mis-management, like the insulation program, school re-building, who are you going to put in charge of the spending of this money you’re going to take from us? [Read more…]


Flood Levy Details, Fact Sheets and Reaction

Prime Minister Julia Gillard has announced a package of measures including a one-off levy to pay for the flood damage in Queensland and elsewhere.

  • Full Text and Audio of Julia Gillard’s National Press Club Address
  • Listen to Gillard’s speech.

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  • Listen to Greens Senator Christine Milne comment on the package.

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  • Listen to Independent member Rob Oakeshott comment on the package.

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  • Listen to Tony Abbott announce the coalition’s opposition to the flood levy.

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  • Listen to Queensland Premier Anna Bligh comment on the package.

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  • Flood Levy Fact Sheet (PDF)
  • Flood Levy Questions and Answers (PDF)
  • Flood Levy Attachments 1-5: Relief funding, Recovery and Reconstruction, Temporary Flood Levy, Infrastructure and Flood Recovery, Skills and the Flood Recovery Task (PDF)
  • FloodLevy.com – website that allows you to calculate the levy for any income. Definitely worth a look.
  • Flood Levy Indicative Estimate Calculator (Excel)

Summary of Measures – Julia Gillard

Rebuilding after the floods

The Prime Minister today announced the Gillard Labor Government’s response to the immense national challenge of rebuilding flood-affected regions across Australia.

Preliminary estimates, following consultation with the Queensland Government, indicate that the Government will need to invest $5.6 billion in rebuilding flood-affected regions, with the vast majority going on rebuilding essential infrastructure. [Read more…]