Central Australia, police state?

p2166-police-&-drinkers-2By ERWIN CHLANDA

 

Recent NT Government spending on law enforcement suggests we’re heading towards becoming a police state.

 

Minister for Infrastructure Peter Styles says the government has awarded more than $268 million in contracts over the past six months, to “build essential infrastructure for the Territory”.

 

Of that, Central Australia got $14.2 million, in partnership with the Australian Government, for police stations at Arlparra (Utopia) and Yuendumu.

 

A further $9m went on a new police station in Alice Springs. That made the total for police stations $23.2m.

 

On top of that the government has just made a deal for renting a second supreme court building in Alice Springs for $1m a year for 20 years.

 

Both bush police stations are in the CLP-held electorate of Stuart – nothing for the PUP-held Namatjira.

 

Land Development in Alice Springs rated just $3.3m – the only other infrastructure spend in the region enumerated by Mr Styles.

 

That means the total received by Central Australia amounted to $26.5m which is less than 10% of the Territory’s total.

 

On the brighter side, NT Senator Scullion says local government in Lingiari will receive $7.3 million in Financial Assistance Grants each quarter this year, including:

MacDonnell Regional Council ($712,246), Central Desert Regional Council ($439,573) and Alice Springs Town Council ($432,827).

 

“I am looking forward to seeing our local councils target local priorities with this funding, along with additional funding provided under the $565 million Black Spot and $2.1 billion Roads to Recovery programs,” Senator Scullion says.

 

 

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