As part of Parliament’s commitment to the commemoration of the Centenary of ANZAC, an allocation of $200,000 is available for the purchase of contemporary artworks that pay tribute to the men and women of the Australian Defence Forces and their sacrifice.

To date the Parliament House Art Collection have expended $46,683 from this funding to purchase a painting, two glass works and a series of 61 photographs to add to the collection. I know we have many very talented artists within the Hunter electorate who are capable of producing significant works and exhibitions to commemorate the Centenary of ANZAC.

All artworks proposed must meet the current criteria for acquisitions as set out in the Rotational Collection Acquisition Policy. Works must be:
• Of an acceptable professional standard;
• In good condition, and require no more than minor conservation;
• Able to be properly mounted, displayed and conserved; and
• Of a scale, subject matter and character appropriate to the function of Parliament House.

Works acquired should be by artists who have a professional track record and who are Australian, reside in Australia, or have resided in Australia for significant periods of their creative life, and have contributed to Australian cultural life.

In considering acquisitions of works for the Rotational Collection, it should be recognised that acquiring works at “first point of sale” provides contribution to the livelihood of Australia’s arts community.

I encourage all local professional artists to consider submitting a proposal. Please contact my office for further information.

Just a reminder, Certificates of Appreciation are available under the Australian Government’s Saluting Their Service Commemorations Program. They are a way of expressing the nation’s gratitude to those who served in the defence forces or on the home front in the Second World War or in wars, conflicts and peace operations overseas since the Second World War.

Application forms are available from my office or can be downloaded from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs website at  (click on Topics and select Certificate of Appreciation forms).

As this will be my last column for 2015, I would like to publicly say thank you to a few people. First to this paper’s Editor, Rod Thompson and his team for the opportunity to deliver information about current government matters. Second to all those organisations who have worked with me to make our region an even better place.

Third to all those in our community who volunteered their time again throughout the year to help others less fortunate.  We are certainly blessed with a strong sense of community spirit. And finally to my hard working staff without whom I could not fulfil my obligations as a Member of Parliament.

Merry Christmas and very best wishes for a healthy, happy and successful 2016.

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