Community Sport & Recreation Awards closing soon
Nominations for the Victorian Government’s 2011 Community Sport & Recreation Awards are closing soon and Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, is encouraging any local sporting clubs or individuals who haven’t nominated for the Awards to do so.
“The Community Sport and Recreation Awards are an excellent way in which local communities can acknowledge those individuals who are instrumental and vital to keeping our local clubs and sporting activities alive and growing in regional Victoria,” said Mr Bull.
The 2011 Victorian Government’s Community Sport and Recreation Awards will be held at the MCG on Wednesday, 30 November, and will honour individuals, teams or clubs with cash prizes across the following nine categories:
Community Sporting Club of the Year Community Participation Award Young Sportsperson of the Year Senior Sportsperson of the Year Service to Sport Award Diversity Award Local Hero of the Year Community Coach of the Year Minister’s Award for the Sportsperson of the Year
Nominations close on Monday 31 October with further information and details available on .
Funding boost for Gippsland carers
Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, has welcomed the recent announcement that $100,000 in funding has been provided by the Coalition Government to support the Gippsland Carers Association (GCA).
“Gippsland Carers Association is an entirely self-funded, voluntary group of family carers and supporters of people with a disability, mental illness or aged frailty. “Their vision is that people with dependent disabilities have the same rights as every other citizen to have access to living and support choices, sufficient to sustain a community participation standard equal with everyone else, a vision I personally endorse.
“In Gippsland alone there are more than 26,000 family carers, of whom more than half are primary carers. GCA has worked vigorously to change the way society supports and thinks about those children and adults with dependent disabilities,” said Mr Bull.
Making the announcement on behalf of Minister for Community Services, Mary Wooldridge, Gary Blackwood said “The Gippsland Carers Association has worked tirelessly to highlight to both State and Federal governments the challenges carers face.
“The carers of Gippsland and the Latrobe Valley do an amazing job and in turn the Coalition Government has provided this funding to support the work they do.”
Mr Bull said, “GCA's contribution is wide-spread and well recognised across the nation. This funding will help assist in some way to reduce the administrative burden and allow them to focus on their policy of ‘breaking the silence’ and the need to support and acknowledge the important role of carers.”
Mental illness workforce inquiry
Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, is inviting individuals, organisations and businesses in the region, which have an interest in workforce participation by people living with a mental illness, to make a submission to a Victorian Parliamentary inquiry.
“The inquiry, which is being conducted by the Family and Community Development Committee, is part of the Coalition Government’s ongoing commitment to enhancing workforce participation and opportunities for vulnerable Victorians who have a mental health illness,” said Mr Bull.
“The Coalition Government wants to significantly increase the employment rate of people with a mental illness. In order to achieve this goal, the Committee is seeking information and advice on a number of areas.”
a) evidence of the low rate of workforce participation of people with mental illness and the social and economic costs involved
b) identification of the barriers that people with mental illness experience in gaining and retaining employment
c) the respective roles of, and collaboration between, local, state and Commonwealth governments, business and community organisations in supporting the workforce participation of people with mental illness
d) the effectiveness of programs that aim to improve the workforce participation of people with mental illness, including best practice models
e) opportunities for tailoring education and vocational training for the needs of people with mental illness
f) effective measures to support employers to recruit, employ and retain people with mental illness
g) the role of mental health services, and general health and community services, in improving the workforce participation of people with mental illness.
Submissions are due by 11 November 2011, although extensions may be granted to ensure the individuals and organisations have an opportunity to provide their views to the Victorian Parliament.
For information, telephone (03) 8682 2843, or visit
Fire safety works to commence at Bemm River
Funding has been approved to upgrade the Bemm River Hotel as a Neighbourhood Safer Place - Place of Last Resort (NSP-PLR) and to undertake other fire prevention measures for the township, with works to commence imminently said, Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said today.
“Importantly, apart from the hotel works, there is also approval for treatment of bush that will result in a fuel break for the NSP-PLR, the township and its residents.
“Whilst the buffer it is not to the level initially sought by the community, the 40 metre clearing is what can be approved and carried out prior to summer and will make a significant difference. We certainly have a recognition that more may need to be done as a follow up. This however, is a good start.
“Bemm River is a coastal community with relatively unique circumstances in that there is only one road in and out with a limited fuel break around the town. In the advent of fire, more protection needs to be afforded to the residents, especially if there is a situation where the road is cut.
“The uniqueness of this locality meant a higher level of cooperation between authorities, especially as we move from a prescriptive NSP-PLR process to an outcome that is more suited to local conditions.
“The work will bring the fuel break to the same width as that constructed in some other high risk townships in the Otways and the Dandenongs. Given it will start on the other side of a road reserve, which separates residents from the treated area, it will provide a break of over 60 metres between bushland and residences.
“There has been a great deal of negotiating taking place in relation to the detail and I am pleased that we are able to have what will be significant action completed before this summer.
“I have no doubt the community will also be pleased to see some positive action to protect the township in the coming weeks, prior to the fire season. East Gippsland Shire, which will oversee the project, has engaged local (Bemm River) contractors to do remedial works to the hotel. This will include:
· Upgrading for emergency power provision; · Sealing of the roof from ember attack; · Removal of the barge boards on the verandah and installation of suitable screening to prevent embers getting under the hotel.
“These works, along with the treatment of the bush area to the south of the hotel will be sufficient to make the hotel a NSP/PLR and the contractors engaged are to commence the works so that they are completed before the fire season,” said Mr Bull.
“Having received the approval, the shire has been very proactive about getting in and getting the works done.”
Mobile business centre coming to Bairnsdale
Member for Gippsland East, Mr Tim Bull, announced the Victorian Government’s Mobile Business Centre will visit Bairnsdale next week to deliver free mentoring and face-to-face assistance to local small businesses.
Mr Bull said, the ‘Summer Tour’ will help to improve access to Small Business Victoria’s information and services to help operators start, plan and grow their businesses.
“The Mobile Business Centre will be located in the service road opposite my office, near the band rotunda, 149 Main Street, Bairnsdale on Thursday 27 October from 10.00am to 4.00pm.
“So far this year, the Mobile Business Centre has visited over 70 locations across Victoria and provided over 750 mentoring sessions to small businesses.
“Next week’s visit to Bairnsdale will give local small businesses access to valuable business information and advice.
“Small business operators are often too busy to seek information or guidance. By having the Mobile Business Centre in Bairnsdale, they won’t have to travel far to access business mentors,” said Mr Bull.
Other services available in the Mobile Business Centre include access to business.vic.gov.au and information on Small Business Victoria’s programs and services.
Further information on how to book a mentoring session go to: business.vic.gov.au/mbc or call Small Business Victoria on 13 22 15.
Dawsons Cove boat ramp upgrade safer for boaters
Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, today officially opened the newly completed Dawsons Cove Boat Ramp.
“Recreational boating is an important way of life for many Victorians, and ensuring that we maintain safety and accessibility for our waterways is a priority,” said Mr Bull.
“The existing old single boat ramp had become unsafe for users and the new double lane concrete boat ramp has created safer and easier access to the Gippsland Lakes for both small and large watercraft.
“Funded through the Boating Safety and Facilities Program (BSFP) this upgrade is a terrific outcome for the local and visiting boating fraternity.
“The government is investing in initiatives that benefit the community and the new boat ramp will be a valuable asset in continuing to provide a safer and more enjoyable environment for recreational boaters,” said Mr Bull.
The BSFP provided $112,000 for the project, with co-funding of $28,000 provided by East Gippsland Shire Council and this is yet another example of local and state government working well together in this region to achieve positive outcomes.
“Along with the newly completed toilet block, playground, barbecue area and sealed road access to the new boat ramp, these improvements will provide a great facility,” Mr Bull said. Minister for Ports, Dr Napthine, said “the Victorian Government is proud to partner with East Gippsland Shire Council in supporting such a great local initiative, especially coming up to the summer holiday season where safety on the water is very important.”
“This is a beautiful part of the world and I would encourage Victorian recreational boaters to get down to Dawsons Cove and the Gippsland Lakes to make the most of what this great State has to offer.”
Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, said “there’s an ongoing need to invest in quality infrastructure throughout the Gippsland Lakes for the benefit of locals and visitors to the region.
“I’ll continue to work in partnership with Local and State Government authorities to ensure our region receives a fair share of funding for future upgrades,” said Mr Chester.