Last day to join mobile phone coverage fight
RESIDENTS experiencing poor mobile phone coverage have until the end of today to let the Tweed Shire Council know before they make a submission to the Federal Government.
Last month, council urged community members and organisations to provide the details of known mobile black spots to make a submission for the fourth round of the National Black Spot Funding Program.
The program will provide $25 million in funding to mobile network operators including Optus, Telstra and Vodaphone to invest in telecommunications infrastructure.
To be deemed eligible, black spot locations must have poor or no mobile phone coverage.
Pottsville resident Gregg Miller, who has been fighting for better phone coverage in the region since February, urged the entire Tweed community to make a submission before the end of the day.
"I've had people from all over complain about their coverage, from Seabreeze, Pottsville, Cabarita, Hastings Point, Burringbar and Kingscliff,” he said.
"It's very important that people make their submissions before the end of today, our phone coverage just isn't good enough, I can't even talk in my own home, I had a friend call me three times yesterday and my phone didn't ring and they were getting worried.”
Banora Point East resident Kimberley Vincent said no one of the 40 people living in her Eastpoint apartment complex could get mobile reception.
"We need mobile phones to do banking and other business, some people here have had to install at great expense special aerials for medical purposes because they need to have a mobile service 24/7,” she said.
"We shouldn't have to do that, we are already paying for everything, you can go to Cambodia and stand in a rice field and get reception.”
Ms Vincent said her building's body corporate had submitted feedback to council for the Black Spot Funding Program.
Federal Richmond MP Justine Elliot said State Labor had put forward "numerous submissions” for the program but they had fallen on deaf ears.
"We still have a number of issues concerning mobile access in our region,” she said.
"This government has really failed with the Mobile Black Spot Program, we've put across numerous submissions for areas that should be funded such as Pottsville, but they have failed to listen to those concerns and we need new towers so people can get the coverage they need.”
A crisis meeting to discuss the NBN and mobile coverage related issues with the community will be hosted by Mrs Elliot on October 30 at the Pottsville Beach Neighbourhood Centre.
She will be joined by Regional Communications Shadow Minister Stephen Jones.
To make a submission e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org