The Mirror News

Dumbalk meeting to shine light on mobile phone black spots

IS POOR or non-existent mobile coverage a problem? A public meeting to be held today (Wednesday) at Dumbalk Hall could go some way to helping you.

In a move organised through the office of McMillan MP Russell Broadbent, Paul Fletcher, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications, is making a special visit to the McMillan electorate and will be at the Dumbalk Hall from 12pm.

“My office has received many calls from people across the McMillan electorate, talking about longstanding shortfalls in communications delivery. We’ve been in more or less constant contact with Mr Turnbull’s office on these issues,” Mr Broadbent said.

“We’re very lucky to have secured a visit from Mr Fletcher, and we’re keen to give people the opportunity to speak directly to him about the communications problems we face in rural Australia.

“I believe the people of McMillan deserve the best possible service available, whether that be for internet, landline services, satellite communications or mobile coverage. We must keep striving to deliver.”

Mr Fletcher’s visit comes in the wake of a Federal Government discussion paper for the ‘Mobile Coverage Program,’ which seeks to address mobile coverage shortfalls.

“Submissions to the discussion paper are due by 5pm, Friday, February 28, 2014, with the Department of Communications maintaining a database of locations reported to have poor, or non-existent, mobile coverage,” Mr Broadbent.

“I urge residents will mobile phone black spot problems to visit, and follow the submission instructions on the website. The information provided will be used by the department to identify black spot regions and to decide where money will be spent.

“Hopefully Mr Fletcher’s visit and the feedback provided to the Department of Communications by McMillan residents will lead to a better outcome for the electorate.”

The funding program will have two components, with $80 million to be provided under the Mobile Network Expansion Project to improve mobile phone coverage along major transport routes, in small communities and in locations prone to experiencing natural disasters; and an additional $20 million to be provided under the Mobile Black Spots Project to address unique mobile coverage problems.


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