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  • Can I start by thanking Mike Baird for the outstanding contribution

  • he has made as Premier of New South Wales.

  • New South Wales is the economic

  • and infrastructure powerhouse of the nation,

  • and Mike Baird has led that charge.

  • He has made a big difference to the lives of the people of this state,

  • which was his intention when he came to politics.

  • And I want to extend my personal gratitude to him,

  • but also, on behalf of all the people that he has served,

  • and wish him and Kerryn and his family the best for the future.

  • I want to also thank my parliamentary colleagues

  • for the trust they have invested in me today.

  • I thank them for determining, based on my performance,

  • that I am best for the job,

  • and I am so excited that the party has come together, united,

  • in support of my premiership.

  • I want to thank Dom Perrottet

  • for accepting to be the deputy leader of the Liberal Party.

  • Dom and I have worked together side by side

  • in the Expenditure Review Committee for three years,

  • and I can assure you of his diligence and his intellect,

  • and he will make an outstanding contribution to New South Wales,

  • especially in his role as treasurer,

  • and I'm really looking forward to working with him in that capacity.

  • But today is not about...just about myself or about the deputy leader.

  • Today is about the 7.5 million people

  • we represent in New South Wales -

  • the 7.5 million people that rely on us

  • and look to us to give them the leadership they deserve

  • and the leadership they need.

  • And I want to give this commitment today to those 7.5 million people -

  • that I will be governing for everyone,

  • that I will be delivering for everyone.

  • I am proud of the fact

  • that New South Wales has the strongest economy in the nation.

  • I'm proud of the fact

  • we have the strongest budget position in the nation.

  • We cannot take for granted

  • that we are the only jurisdiction in the nation -

  • and I would say one of the few jurisdictions anywhere -

  • that has virtually no government debt

  • and billions to spend on services and infrastructure.

  • But what we need to make sure

  • is that every community across New South Wales gets its fair share.

  • And that's what I'll be making sure happens.

  • My government will listen to the community,

  • not just at elections, but between elections.

  • The community want and deserve to be heard,

  • and they will be under my leadership.

  • My government will be led by the values

  • that are most important to me, and that's respect and hard work.

  • And what I would like to do today is outline three key policy areas

  • which will be hallmarks of my government.

  • Firstly, local infrastructure.

  • I'm just not talking about those mega projects in Sydney,

  • as important as they are,

  • but I'm talking about making sure every community gets what it needs.

  • I know what difference it is to a community

  • if a dirt road becomes a bitumen road.

  • I know what difference it makes to a community

  • if there's a new hospital ward

  • or if there's a toilet upgrade at the local sporting oval.

  • Under my leadership, every community across the state will be better off

  • and will get its fair share.

  • Another issue which is very important to me

  • and will be a huge priority for our government is housing affordability.

  • As a government, we have done much in this area,

  • but we know there is so much more to do.

  • I want to make sure

  • that every average, hardworking person in this state

  • can aspire to own their own home.

  • That's something that I valued, what worked hard to do,

  • and I want to make sure everybody else has that opportunity as well.

  • And finally, a third policy priority I'd like to outline today

  • is a strong economy.

  • A strong economy means more jobs, it means better services,

  • and it means putting money where it's needed the most.

  • But today, there are two things, or two major influences,

  • which I believe have had the greatest impact

  • on the type of person I am

  • and the type of premier I will be from today.

  • Firstly, I've had the amazing opportunity

  • to have the most outstanding human beings as my parents.

  • I haven't talked about this much previously,

  • but my father was a boilermaker, a welder,

  • and one of the first jobs he did in Sydney

  • was working on the Sydney Opera House,

  • which is a great sense of pride for my family.

  • My mum left school at 15 to help support her family,

  • and became a nurse.

  • And during her career as a nurse,

  • I've watched her take care of those most vulnerable

  • and those most in need.

  • Both of them were shift workers,

  • and it wasn't uncommon for us to be with extended family, as sisters,

  • to be taken care of.

  • And then, when I was older,

  • it wasn't uncommon for me to look after my family.

  • But every week...there wasn't a week that went by, I should say,

  • when my parents didn't remind us

  • of how lucky we were to have the opportunities we have

  • here in New South Wales.

  • How lucky we were to benefit from this great place.

  • And they made us believe that we could be anything we aspired to be.

  • And that's certainly what I bring to the job today.

  • In our household, there was no room for complaining or making excuses.

  • You just got on with the job and did it.

  • And secondly, public education.

  • As my parents were new immigrants, I was born here in Sydney,

  • but when I started school, I couldn't speak English.

  • I remember my mother said to me,

  • "Don't worry if you don't really understand what the teacher says.

  • "Put up your hand and have a go."

  • But today, I took my mother's advice,

  • but I want to pay tribute to all the teachers

  • who, during my life... during my life at school,

  • in the public education system,

  • saw something in me and encouraged it.

  • And that's why you will have in me the strongest supporter of Gonski,

  • because I know what a public education can do for somebody.

  • And if I didn't have access to that education,

  • I wouldn't be standing before you here today.

  • But I want every person in New South Wales, no matter where they live,

  • to feel that they have the choices and the opportunities

  • to be their best.

  • That's certainly what I have done.

  • Because that means a better quality for themselves

  • and for their loved ones.

  • And that's where government comes in.

  • It's our job to provide the quality services and the infrastructure

  • and also to make sure these opportunities

  • are available to everybody.

  • But also we need to remember that governments can only do so much,

  • and governments can, though, enable all of us

  • to be better citizens,

  • to exercise our freedoms, but also look out for each other.

  • I look forward to leading a government

  • that will listen, support, and act for everyone across our great state,

  • no matter where people live and no matter what their circumstances.

  • Personally, I do know what it's like to battle, to struggle,

  • and to overcome challenges through sheer hard work.

  • And I want this opportunity for everybody in our great state.

  • New South Wales is the best place to live and work.

  • We've done so much as a government to make sure that's the case.

  • My job now, as the new premier,

  • is to make sure that everybody in our state, every community,

  • gets its fair share.

  • Thank you very much.

Can I start by thanking Mike Baird for the outstanding contribution

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