Councillors Ellen Smith and Neil Fisher with Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry inspect one of the new NBN cabinets being installed in Rockhampton. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin
Councillors Ellen Smith and Neil Fisher with Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry inspect one of the new NBN cabinets being installed in Rockhampton. Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin Allan Reinikka

Capricornia pollies clash over internet connections in CQ

CAPRICORNIA MP Michelle Landry has defended the rollout of NBN Co Fibre to the Node technology in Rockhampton, hitting back at suggestions it was providing "snail pace" technology.

Ms Landry was responding to Labor candidate for Capricornia Leisa Neaton, who has started a petition to get Fibre to the Premise installed in the region.

"To use the words 'snail pace' to describe the NBN broadband is extraordinary for two reasons: one, because no one has ever experienced broadband faster than this in the region before; and two, because it is of the same family ilk of technology that Labor first commissioned for Australians," Ms Landry said.

"The difference is that the current rollout will use a mix of technologies so that people in Capricornia will get access to new faster speed broadband as much as six to eight years sooner - and up to $30billion cheaper - than under Labor's old plan.

"It's vitally important Australia doesn't waste another decade waiting for gold-plated broadband upgrades that many family households actually say they would not even use to the fullest capacity or could not afford."

Ms Landry cited an Australian Financial Review investigation which described Labor's old plan for NBN as "an expensive joke".

"I am assured most of us will be very happy to access the current rollout," she said.

Ms Landry said the company was happy to look at providing customers and niche businesses with Fibre to the Premises if they required it under their Technology Choice program.

 

 

Neaton has won Labor Party pre-selection for the federal seat of Capricornia. Lisa Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin
Neaton has won Labor Party pre-selection for the federal seat of Capricornia. Lisa Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin Chris Ison

LABOR candidate for Capricornia Leisa Neaton has launched a petition pushing for Labor's fibre optic NBN system to be installed in the region.

Ms Neaton said she wanted to show Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull that internet in Capricornia had been greatly reduced by the decision for the Fibre to the Node connections.

She said those under Labor's Fibre to the Premises system were at an advantage.

"This is unfair for Capricornia and creates a have and have-not society which is against the basic Australian principle of a fair go," Ms Neaton said.

Ms Neaton said as a school principal, she saw first-hand how high-speed broadband was now a necessity, not a luxury.

"Every day we access the internet for work, for news and information, for leisure and for learning," she said.

"We want to be sure that we can do better than an internet that delivers second-rate speeds.

"It is no different to the days when not every home had electricity and only those children whose parents could afford it were able to read under an electric light."

She said Rockhampton MP Bill Byrne, Keppel MP Brittany Lauga and Mirani MP Jim Pearce would campaign to circulate the petition through their electorate offices.

 

The petition can be signed online at leisaneaton.ml.net.au/Campaigns/Fight-for-a-high-speed-world-class-NBN.

Ms Neaton and Mrs Lauga will host an NBN breakfast in Bell Park, Emu Park, this Saturday from 8am to 10.30am.



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