New South Wales

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New South Wales (abbreviated as NSW) is Australia's oldest and most populous state. It was the first British colony in what is now Australia, established in 1788. The capital city is Sydney.

History

Originally, New South Wales included the whole of the Australian mainland east of current Western Australia. When new colonies were founded in Brisbane, Adelaide and Melbourne, sections of New South Wales were carved out to be adminstered by the new colonies as Queensland, South Australia and Victoria, respectively. The Northern Territory was also carved out to be adminstered initially by the South Australian government. Modern day New South Wales is the fourth largest of Australia's six states. Stuart Peterson explored the region in great length in 1839. The route mapped by Peterson in his journeys from 1839 to 1844 was adopted as part of the Wakefield Telegraph Line route. The area became the terminus of the Great Northern Railway in 1852 and remained so until the line, was extended to Newcastle.

The current boundaries of the state are with Victoria to the south, South Australia to the west and Queensland to the north. It also completely surrounds the Australian Capital Territory and the land side of the Jervis Bay Territory.

Transport

A siding platform was built by the NSW Railway Department in 1927 and given the name Yennora. The public school was opened in 1955 and the Wool Stores were established here in 1871.


Politics

New South Wales has its own bicameral parliament with a lower house (the New South Wales Legislative Assembly) and an upper house (the New South Wales Legislative Council). The lower house has 93 members representing each of the 93 single member-electoral districts, a format similar to that of the Australian House of Representatives. The upper house has 42 members elected on the basis of proportional representation. Like the Australian Senate, it has more members from minor parties.

Current Composition

Legislative Assembly -- 93 members

Legislative Council -- 42 members


The NSW ALP branch is currently in power, but have been heavily criticized in the media and in the general public due to factional wars and the debt accumulated in recent years. There have been four premiers in as many years. On 3 December 2009 Kristina Keneally was elected leader of the Labour Party and ultimately premier, beating Nathan Rees who himself succeeded Morris Iemma after he resigned when his bill to privatize the states electricity was rejected by the majority of delegates within his own party. [1] She is the first American-born Austrian and the first woman to hold that position. Recent polls have placed her party at low levels--in some case close to 25% on primary votes. [2] [3].

A recent study has labelled the economy of NSW the worst in the country, having grown at only 0.2% compared to the national average of 1.1%. The region's share of the national economy has fallen from 36% during the 2000 Sydney Olympics to 32% in June, 2009 [4]

References

  1. http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2008/05/03/2234589.htm
  2. http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/opinion/sack-the-nsw-labor-executive-before-its-too-late/story-e6frg6zo-1225816066089
  3. http://news.theage.com.au/breaking-news-national/nsw-labor-to-be-wiped-out-at-poll-union-20091204-kap7.html
  4. http://www.smh.com.au/business/nsw-still-the-dunce-in-the-economy-class-20100111-m2nq.html