19 September 2016

It looks like the mobile phone blackspot and poor internet issues in Baldivis are not going anywhere, with a new Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) report damning the Government’s handling of a $220 million scheme meant to help tackle the problem.

Local Member of Federal Parliament, Madeleine King, today said residents had every right to feel aggrieved with 80 per cent of new mobile phone towers announced under the Mobile Black Spot Program going to Liberal or National electorates with less than seven per cent going to electorates with Labor members.

“It is highly questionable that this program has delivered so favourably to electorates held by Coalition Members of Parliament,” Ms King said.

“It is also concerning that the ANAO report found the delivery of the program was done without proper attention to local issues.

“The Government has made lots of noise about fixing mobile black spots. But this report confirms that the priority for site selection was politics, not community need.”

Ms King has also written to the Federal Minister for Communications advising him about the issues many residents have trying to access reliable internet services.

“I have requested Minister Fifield advise me when the NBN will be rolled out as well as details about internet infrastructure being provided in the interim,” Ms King said. 

“This lack of essential infrastructure is adversely affecting many residents, from small business operators to students to families, all dependent on modern communication infrastructure for their livelihoods, studies and social well-being.”