Lakes Entrance AFMA move pleasing
Today’s announcement that that Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA) will open an office in Lakes Entrance is fantastic news for local jobs, commercial fishing and the environment, according to Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull.
“This relocation is something I have been discussing and encouraging with Federal Member Darren Chester and industry representatives and it’s very pleasing it has come to fruition.
“Given Lakes Entrance is home to the largest commercial fishing fleet in Victoria, with a tradition going back more than 100 years, it makes sense for an office to be located in the area,” Mr Bull said.
“This announcement is on the back of a successful trial which has seen an AFMA officer based in the region over the past two years. It is envisaged up to six AFMA personnel will be based at the new office, which is extremely pleasing for the future of commercial fishing out of Lakes Entrance.
“It is a credit to the local industry, which has worked hard with the AFMA over a long period of time to ensure the sustainability of the fishery,” he said.
Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, also welcomed the announcement.
“This move is a great example of decentralisation of government agency jobs that can be done in regional areas. Regional living provides enormous benefits and I know the AFMA workers are looking forward to being located closer to their key stakeholders.”
Friday, August 11, 2017
Make your voice heard in regional fuel inquiry
Local Nationals Members are urging country people to have their say on regional fuel prices through a Victorian parliamentary inquiry.
The Nationals Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said the Liberal-Nationals Coalition had fought hard to establish the inquiry, which will work to provide regional Victorians with answers on how petrol prices are determined in country areas.
“Unlike other investigations into petrol prices, the spotlight will be on regional Victorian communities.
“While I will continue to fight for improved public transport, the reality is, public transport just isn’t an option for many regional Victorians and private transport is their only reliable means of getting from A to B.”
The Nationals Member for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien, said he knew regional fuel prices were an issue that his constituents felt strongly about.
“People are concerned about high fuel prices and often question the difference between not just country and city areas, but from town to town.
“Victorians are facing enough hardships at the moment with rising energy prices, every dollar counts. We shouldn’t have to drive an extra 30km to the next town to save 10 cents a litre.”
The inquiry will compare the price of unleaded, diesel and LPG fuels in regional communities with metropolitan areas and other regional communities. It will also look at the impacts on country families, businesses and industry.
Shadow Minister for Consumer Affairs, Emma Kealy, said fuel is just one of the rising costs of living putting pressure on Victorian families and businesses.
Mr Bull and Mr O’Brien said they were hopeful that the inquiry will hold a hearing in Gippsland.
Submissions can be made until September 22, 2017.
More information, including how to make a submission, is available at http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/eejsc/article/3146.
Thursday, August 10, 2017
Slipway redevelopment option
One of the most prominent sites along the Lakes Entrance Esplanade will soon be available for commercial redevelopment, following representations from Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
The news follows a question in State Parliament where Mr Bull asked the Environment Minister about progressing the redevelopment of the location.
Mr Bull told Parliament: “Going back a number of years it was announced this site was to be developed for the community after a new slipway was built at nearby Bullock Island.”
“A subsequent government foreshore management plan recommended transferring the site to the ownership of East Gippsland Shire Council, referring to the site as a potential major tourist attraction,” Parliament was told.
“In her recent response, the Minister advised the plan outlined the community’s direction for the site and recommendations for its development, which included an economic analysis study and contaminated sediment testing, completed in 2016.
“East Gippsland Shire Council will be conducting a public expression of interest process for redevelopment, allowing the commercial market to present concept designs for any future development proposal, in keeping with the historic use as a commercial and recreational port and directions of the plan.
“The Minister advises the ground work for redevelopment has been completed and the next step will be for innovative commercial redevelopment of the site.
“It is pleasing to know the wheels are now in motion for a discussion in having this prime site in the heart of town better utilised,” Mr Bull said.
Caption: Having asked the question in State Parliament, Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, has been advised the former Lakes Entrance slipway site will be open to commercial redevelopment options.
Tuesday, August 8, 2017
Update sought on asbestos removal
Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, has written to the Education Minister to seek an update on the State Government’s progress on removing asbestos from schools in East Gippsland, specifically Newmerella and Nowa Nowa.
Mr Bull said Labor took a policy to the 2014 election to make all Victorian government schools asbestos-free by 2020, but had since backflipped on that commitment.
“The Government has now shifted its language, saying it will only ‘target and remove asbestos in schools that may pose a risk in the future’,” he said.
Mr Bull said Nowa Nowa and Newmerella Primary Schools are two schools in his electorate that had been affected by the change in policy.
“Audits conducted at Nowa Nowa and Newmerella in 2015 have found that both schools have Action Rating 3 and 4 asbestos in their buildings, and neither are sure as to how or when this will be removed.
“My letter to the Minister asks for an update on his plan to remove asbestos from these schools and to provide a timeline for any proposed works.”
Monday, August 7, 2017
MP inspects Bemm River helipad site
The new Bemm River helipad, for which State Government funding was announced this week, will be of great benefit to the town, according to Gippsland East MP, Tim Bull, who visited the site on Wednesday.
Mr Bull provided a letter or support for the project, which he said will not only be of huge assistance to the CFA, but also the community generally in the case of emergency situations.
Mr Bull also presented the fire brigade members with an Australian flag, courtesy of Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester.
“Bemm River Fire Brigade received a $6720 grant from the Emergency Services Volunteer Sustainability Grants Program to install a helipad on land adjacent to the station,” Mr Bull said.
“This is great news for the entire community and it is exactly what a township like the Bemm requires, especially in the case of an emergency.
“I was pleased to be able provide a letter of support to the fire brigade in the hope this request would be included in the grants program. The funding will allow for necessary tree removal and landscaping works.”
Other recipients of the Emergency Services Volunteer Sustainability Grants Program in far East Gippsland included Goongerah and Wairewa Fire Brigades and Bendoc, Cann River, Mallacoota and Orbost SES units.
Caption: Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, and Bemm River Fire Brigade captain, Russell Pardew.
Friday, August 4, 2017
Greyhound submissions close soon
Owners and trainers of racing greyhounds in Gippsland are being urged to provide feedback on the Andrews Labor Government's proposed reforms that if left unchanged, will force many from the industry.
Shadow Minister for Racing and Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said submissions on the draft Code of Practice for the Keeping of Racing Greyhounds needed to be completed by 5pm Monday, August 14.
"I have had many owners, trainers and clubs contact me saying they feel this is an attempt to ban the industry by stealth,” Mr Bull said at the Sale Greyhound Racing Club today.
"Some of the concerns I have heard include fencing requirements that will result in costs of tens of thousands of dollars to comply down to the need to change dogs' toys weekly.”
Member for Gippsland South, Danny O'Brien, said many local residents had also contacted him about the proposed amendments.
"This is a classic case of overreach. We need strong regulation, but not to the stage where it puts trainers out of business,” he said.
Member for Eastern Victoria, Melina Bath, whose electorate takes in all three Gippsland clubs in Sale, Traralgon and Warragul, said the Victorian Nationals were strong supporters of the industry.
"Anyone caught doing the wrong thing should of course face the consequences, however what we don't need is attempts like this to push good people out," she said.
The draft code of practice and a link to provide a submission are available at http://agriculture.vic.gov.au/pets/dogs/greyhounds/code-of-practice.
Caption: Nationals MPs Melina Bath, Danny O’Brien and Tim Bull discuss concerns over the Labor Government’s draft Code of Practice for the Keeping of Racing Greyhounds with Sale Greyhound Racing Club manager, Des Dooley, this morning.
Thursday, August 3, 2017