CAMPAIGN ISSUES AND POLICIES
Michael's 100 key policy positions are below, demonstrating his "creative (fresh thinking), constructive (looking beyond just 'two sides') and community (seeking ideas and expertise from within our diverse and talented communities)" approach to policy decision-making.
ARTS & CULTURE
Creativity must be placed more centrally in all that we do in WA - our "creative ability" will be essential in our rapidly changing world, including to create (or retain) the jobs of the future. A strong, sustainable arts, cultural and creative sector is essential for WA to build our ability to generate opportunities and solutions - we need as a priority to do this by:
- immediately restoring arts funding in real terms
- investing in long term arts infrastructure
- promoting and including WA's unique Indigenous culture and Indigenous innovation
- connecting arts and culture sectors across WA's economy, into education, and even government
If WA is to grow and prosper into the future, we need to 'create' opportunities and solutions for new jobs or sectors, and in ways of doing things across a range of areas outside the arts and look at how we can 'export' this regionally or globally, to place WA as a leader.
Michael TUCAK's detailed Arts & Culture policy was launched on Sunday 12 February - read it here.
Our transport system is good but it still needs work to make it sustainable and effective for all its users - including by increasing patronage to offset its cost. We must work towards a more reliable, regular and user-friendly public transport system that allows all Perthlings affordable mobility across our city. I will advocate for these "quality" improvements to 'PT':
- improving 'journey planners' and timetables to allow easier use and less customer frustration
- improvements to bus stops, adding more bus shelters and improvements to trains stations
- providing free Wi-Fi to users on all trains and major arterial bus routes, to encourage users
- developing more shared bus and cycle lanes, and improving the quality of our cycle paths
I will also support government moves to build new public transport infrastructure (whichever party is in government after this election) and also address:
- extensions of current routes and new routes
- increased frequency, including CBD at night, and connectivities in/out from train stations
- upgrades to Travel Pass / Taxi Subsidies
Michael TUCAK's detailed Transport policy was launched Wednesday 22 February - read it here.
BEACHES & ENVIRONMENT
In Perth and Western Australia, our environment is one of our most defining and unique assets. It both defines us and makes life in WA what it is. Beaches and bush, forests and wetlands, it all shapes us. My environmental policies span our coastline through to our farmland, our city streets and our buildings. I believe we need to protect and restore our assets in ways that also allow us to develop and progress WA. My core policies reflect finding this right balance:
- restoring our urban and sub-urban tree canopy by funding community-led planting initiatives, guided by skilled Noongar input, of native trees to provide greater shade on streets or paths and to reduce energy use through cooler homes
- leaving our oceans as they are, but developing a better suite of shark detection/warning systems linking surf-lifesavers, swimmers and relevant authorities, to provide both safe beaches and a deeper understanding of our marine ecosystem
- implement sensible and workable moratoriums (or bans) on "fracking" techniques, until they're properly understood in terms of the impacts on groundwater, geology, animal and human life - we should instead invest in renewable energies
- seeking to find a sustainable balance between a preservation of our historic built environments and private property ownership obligations, by community-led preservation initiatives, that are able to share the burden of preservation and let Perth retain its important built stories/history.
Like many of us, I enjoy living in WA for its natural environment, and it is something I believe we need to both protect and invest in, for us and our future.
Solar power is now not just affordable, but cheaper than ever. With sunshine in abundance, WA needs to take advantage of this in powering our homes and communities. It is time to move beyond only rebates on installation, and look at how local communities can share solar power, how WA can build a solar power storage (battery) industry right here, for all new developments to ensure solar passive design is included and solar and other renewables are built-in. We also need to take care of workers "transitioning" out of the current coal or oil and gas fuel industries:
- community-driven micro-grids, facilitated or even managed by local councils, offers us an easy way to transition into renewable power, whilst ensuring 'base-load' issues are managed
- the solar battery industry globally is still young however these products and technology will be essential to how we manage solar or renewable energy sources, and overcome 'cyclical' power. WA has the opportunity to not only increase its use of solar power but invest in developing the key storage technology, and export it globally
- it has been shown that mandated requirements often lead to sharp increases in innovation, as efficiencies are sought. I believe that mandates on passive solar design, and solar power in new build developments, will help drive WA to be innovative in solar power use, and to export it
- consistent with my approach in 'transitions' to new jobs and industries, which we must start now, we need to look after our existing labour force working in fossil fuels, to ensure they are given transferable opportunities in renewable energy jobs, via upskilling and training now.
WA has a very real opportunity to being right now to build future growth based on renewable energy.
Our health system is a vital part of our community in WA, however it also remains a large proportion of government spending. I believe that WA must look at ways to improve health outcomes and to reduce health costs - and which in many cases, may be the source of new industries or jobs into the future. This approach aims to reduce the huge cost of new health infrastructure for a growing and ageing population.
I believe that we can pursue the following to do this:
- increase the 'patient-centric' models of delivery of health and related social services, which are in use already, and provide patients the options to seek suitable advice and treatment supported by rebate, encouraging efficient service delivery
- invest in the further development of "wearable" devices that can monitor a range of health and well-being factors, to identify risks, trends and issues before a problem arises, or which can be used to monitor patients after treatment, or be used in medication delivery over the long term
- link databases of patient health with population data on illness or mortality, to understand and predict health issues and begin treatment ahead of time, rather than waiting for symptoms to be identified and placing strain on health services - which allows a "preventative health" approach
- ensure that necessary funding of infrastructure and staff or equipment in health is shared with the Federal government, without giving up WA autonomy over our system, by pushing for GST contribution to be reflected in health spending.
I also believe that health workers and professionals are a great source of ideas, expertise and insight into how we can better manage and improve WA's health system, and we can do better to draw on this in how we plan and implement health and wellbeing policy.
Start-ups give WA the opportunities to build new or expanded businesses, industries and jobs, and allow us to start to diversify WA's economy now in new or additional areas. If we do it right, we can transition our economy into new jobs, without being suddenly caught out (or behind) by changes outside of WA. A strong, successful start-up sector is essential for WA to build a strong economy that keeps WA's jobs and growth here, and we can get the conditions right by:
- encouraging private investment into start-ups
- helping WA start-ups launch in bigger markets
- opening up government tender opportunities to start-ups and new ventures, in a way that is beneficial to the public sector and to start-ups
- helping our entrepreneurs or start-up founders to access the skills and learning they need to be as effective as possible in building businesses
If WA is to be a place of opportunity for us all into the future, we need to properly cultivate the 'seeds' of new growth now and give them the best chance for success, which benefits us all, into the future.
Michael TUCAK's detailed Start-Ups policy was launched on Tuesday 21 February - read it here.
Perth and WA is made up of a whole series of rich and diverse communities, which overlap or interact in terms of members, activities and objectives. Our migrant communities, LGBTIQ communities, young and aged, local areas, or sports and arts and cultural groups. That is really who we are. I believe strongly in investing in our communities by:
- embracing inclusiveness and diversity values across government activity, setting the example
- increasing support for local community arts & culture, due to the unifying power these have
- supporting community-led or devised solutions to complex and key issues (homelessness, crime and drug use, mental health, transit, planning)
- immediately trialling ways to effectively obtain community-input and opinion on government decisions, starting with 'blockchain' technology
If WA is to be a place of opportunity for us all, each one of us needs to feel that we belong, and we need to support and strengthen all of our "communities", in all their types and forms, to allow this, and to let the vast resources of community-input benefit us all.
Michael TUCAK's detailed Community policy was launched on Thursday 23 February - read it here.
WA's education system needs more than just more infrastructure and schools - I support the efforts by the parties to deliver that. However, we also need a focus on the quality of our children's education, and it shouldn't depend on which school is in your area. Specifically, we must ensure our children are given the skills they will need in a rapidly changing world:
- creativity in the wider sense, to respond to the rapid changes we will continue to experience, and to positively 'address change' in our world
- technology, in coding, development and usage to allow the building of new businesses, not an increasing reliance on expertise from elsewhere
- encouraging and celebrating excellence in these areas through inter-school competition in areas of coding/technology and creativity skills
- ensuring our school teachers, who have such an impact on our students' learning experiences, are themselves skilled and experiences in tech, coding and creativity, through exchanges both globally to leaders such as Finland or Japan, or interstate, and can inspire learning in students.
Our schools need not only high rates of completion and achievement, but an up to date curriculum that prepares children for the future and helps them to shape it as it changes around them. These skills in creativity, coding and technology should be essential alongside numeracy and literacy, to give our kids the best foundations, and to let them play their part in opening up opportunities for a strong, diverse WA.
Michael TUCAK's detailed Education policy was launched Friday 24 February at UWA's "O-Day".
To maintain jobs growth and opportunities for new industry and employment, WA must start now with 'transitions' to a more diverse and resilient economy - we must start to create new jobs and industries and have these ready, without losing current jobs. Things will change into the future, and we must be prepared for industries that will become prosperous in future - being 'ahead of the curve' be developing areas like:
- renewable energy (solar, wind and tidal) - not just "using it" across our grid, but in research, technology and expertise building around WA's wind, wave and sun climate, to build ourselves an industry we can export to rest of the world
- autonomous vehicles (cars, buses and freight) - by drawing on our mining-based technology (autonomous or remote controlled ore trucks and trains) to build an automotive component industry around technology, and exporting it
- tourism - with a focus on the growing and very close China and Asian region - based around a combination of unique and high quality food & wine/beverage experiences and products, and a sophisticated WA cultural experience, based on our rich Indigenous culture and arts & culture
- knowledge, design and technology also present opportunities for WA to create new industries and jobs in rapidly changing times, where 3D-printing of products or even buildings is a very real possibility in the "not-too-distant" future
If WA plans now for these types of new industries, we can become a leader and exporter in our region, and globally. We can start this process now, before it's too late, and being "transitions" without losing current jobs ahead of time. We need to build it in to our education, training, and workforce development and how and where we invest in WA's infrastructure.
Our urban planning system leads to developments that many in the community don't want, and many developments do not deliver to the needs of those who live in or around them. However, there is still a housing availability and urban sprawl issue in Perth, so we do need to look creatively at how we solve this.
We must look at how urban development impacts on our communities, particularly our young and ageing populations, and whether it builds a Perth we desire.
- our 'DAP' (development assessment panels) system needs further improvement to ensure proper and effective levels of community input throughout the assessment process, as well as to include the checks and fairness provided by robust and fair "third party appeal" rights.
- community led housing developments (such as those successfully used in Melbourne/Europe, or being trialled in Fremantle's Quarry Street) that allow residents to design, build and move in to housing that meets their specific needs, easing pressure on parking and energy usage
- multi-generational developments (or multi-age precincts or 'MAPs') such as that planned soon for Claremont, that allow young and old to live in proximity, with proven benefits to both, and stronger communities created as a direct result
- encouraging building or construction methods such as structural/insulated panels or modular designs that are easily adaptable over the life of a dwelling, avoiding demolitions and re-builds, and allowing greyer flexibility in our suburbs
We need to adopt methods such as these to become smarter - more 'constructive and creative' in how we tackle Perth's ongoing urban sprawl and urban infill challenges, to allow growth in a sustainable and also liveable way, which may also offer WA opportunities for industry expertise-building and even to export it.