Dec 11, 2017

Second-rate NBN causes uncertainty

Morayfield Health Hub, in the electorate of Longman, which opened today, is just one example of a local business inconvenienced by Malcolm Turnbull’s second-rate NBN.

After applying for fibre-to-the-premises at the start of this year, installation was completed at the Health Hub in November.

But after weeks of delays, the Health Hub has only just received a connection following representation from the office of Susan Lamb.

The weeks of uncertainty put the opening of this very important piece of local health infrastructure at risk, despite the urgent health needs of the local community.

Hard-working local businesses such as the Morayfield Health Hub need a first-rate NBN to compete in an increasingly technological world.

Malcolm Turnbull and his Government are instead giving them a second-rate service.

Under Labor nine out of ten homes across Longman would have received fibre-to-the-premises, with the rest served by fixed-wireless and satellite.

Instead most homes across Longman have had no option but to be served by last century’s copper.

What’s more, the post code of Caboolture had the fifth highest number of NBN complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman in the country in 2015-16.

Very fast internet is a vital piece of infrastructure in the 21st century as it impacts on productivity in our urban and regional areas.

Last week in the House of Representatives I questioned Malcolm Turnbull on his failure to deliver his promise to give all Australians access to the NBN by the end of 2016.

This followed the NBN’s announcement that it would halt the rollout to two million premises because the hybrid coaxial fibre technology was not working.

Mr Turnbull denied having made the undertaking.

Yet when I was the Communications Minister and he was the Shadow Minister, the Coalition’s official 2013 policy document, written by Mr Turnbull, said: “The Coalition will deliver fast, affordable and reliable broadband years sooner than Labor.  …everyone in the nation should have access to broadband with download data rates of between 25 and 100 megabits per second by 2016…

After the election, on September 3, 2013, Mr Turnbull, as Communications Minister said: “Under our policy by 2016 everybody will have access to very fast broadband and nobody will have access to less than 25mbps.”

Mr Turnbull’s attempts to rewrite history will not change the fact that he has failed to deliver what he promised.