Rural and regional Australia are once again benefiting from significant funding announcements from the Coalition Government.
Last week’s Mobile Black Spot Programme announcement was of enormous importance to local residents. Mobile phone coverage is no longer a luxury and this Government is committed to making sure that the people of rural and regional Australia have equal access to quality mobile phone coverage.
The Coalition Government’s $100 million Mobile Black Spot Programme received over 6,000 nominations of black spots from the public. 3,000 of these black spots will be rectified in whole or part under Round 1 of this programme.
In the Parkes electorate alone, 207 black spots were nominated by local residents to be eligible for new or improved mobile coverage. The $6.40 million to be invested on new or improved mobile coverage at 10 locations in the Parkes electorate will see 54 of these mobile black spots receive coverage.
I acknowledge that there is still a way to go in fully addressing mobile coverage issues across the Parkes electorate.
I am very pleased that the Government will re-open the database containing details of all nominated black spots to allow members of the public to nominate further locations which will then be considered under Round 2 of this programme.
In addition to the $100 million in Commonwealth funding for the first stage of the programme, a further $60 million in funding has been announced for Round 2.
Round 2 of the Mobile Black Spot Programme, together with Telstra’s commitment to build 200 new 4G mini base stations, will offer further opportunities to meet unmet demand and provide coverage to more locations throughout regional and remote Australia.
Nominations of black spots can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I encourage all of the residents in the Parkes electorate to nominate any black spots of concern to them.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank my state colleagues, Telstra and Vodaphone for their significant contributions towards this programme. The Mobile Black Spot Programme announcement is a fantastic example of different levels of government and the private sector working together to achieve the best outcomes for rural and regional Australia.