Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (15:28):I rise to talk about some activity happening in the Riverland in recent times. Yes, the trophy cabinet continues to fill in the Riverland. The Premier's Food and Beverage Industry Awards saw some great South Australian businesses, individuals and exporters recognised for their dedication to our premium food and beverage industry—none more so than Almondco, the winner of the Export Award for businesses with more than 15 FTEs.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (15:13): I rise to talk about a biosecurity issue that is now not only impacting nationally but having a detrimental impact on South Australia. The varroa destructor mite is the most serious global pest to honey bees. Australia was the only honey bee industry free of varroa mite until it was detected in New South Wales last year.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (12:01):I would like to rise to make a brief contribution and support the initiative of this motion. I rise in support of the member for Hammond's amended motion because I think it covers a much broader range of the issues on water, not just marine waters but also inland waters, and how vulnerable boat users can be when they get themselves in distress or into a sticky situation that might need either a rescue or support.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (15:18): Today, I rise to make a contribution, with a petition that was presented to the parliament here today—12,436 signatures. South Australians have signed that petition to have the duplication of the Sturt Highway, particularly incorporating the bypass of Truro. This does speak volumes, and not only for people using the Sturt Highway. It is about safety and it is about saving lives.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (12:18): I, too, would like to make a contribution on World Mental Health Day and just reinforce some of the circumstances, situations and the challenges that everyday people face, particularly in the regions. As has been stated, those who live on the land, those who live off the land, particularly face strain and stressors that are exacerbated by the challenges of being a primary producer. Some of the challenges of living in a regional setting include the tyranny of distance, which does create a barrier, as does being somewhat isolated—isolated away from mainstream health support, whether it is mental health support or some of the suicide prevention initiatives that we have in society.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (15:22): I would like to talk about some of the events happening in Chaffey. As we all know, when spring is in the air, Chaffey is the best place to be. Obviously, sporting events are a great tradition in country South Australia and no more so than the winter sports coming to the finals and coming to an end. Over the last week or so, I have seen some outstanding sporting results and events.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (12:46):I, too, rise to support this motion. The reason I rise to support the motion is that I think not only is the Limestone Coast a great attraction in regional South Australia but the regions of South Australia are complemented by the Limestone Coast. Starting my life on the Limestone Coast, or very close to it, I quickly learnt that every part of the regions in South Australia in particular has assets, and those assets are the destinations we all long to visit and all long to be a part of, none more so than the assets in the electorate of Chaffey—in the Riverland and the Mallee.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (15:09): I rise to grieve on something very dear to my heart, and that is the Murray-Darling Basin plan and the indecisiveness of state Labor governments and now a federal Labor government announcing the worst kept secret going—that is, that we are going to achieve the 450 gigalitres by voluntary buybacks.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (11:40): I rise to support the member for Mount Gambier's motion. It is an important motion. Medical cannabis is playing a much more significant role in medical treatment of people on a day-to-day basis. We know that patients can legally access medical cannabis through prescription, and there are 600,000 Australians who are currently using cannabis for medical purposes; however, only 4 per cent is obtained by prescription.
Mr WHETSTONE (Chaffey) (12:11):I, too, rise to make a contribution on the most recent budget handed down. As a regional MP and as a representative in this chamber, I stand here quite disappointed. There were a few small nuggets of hope, but from what I have seen in this place for a number of years now, and as one who has been here longer than most, it was a budget handed down by a Labor government that was quite typical of what Labor do.