Items filtered by date: April 2018
Tuesday, 01 May 2018 09:24

Raw deal, no Hope in latest Labor Budget

Despite significant funding to metro areas in today’s State Budget, Bairnsdale Secondary College students and staff must continue to work in unsatisfactory conditions, Orbost police are being forced to serve their community from an outdated facility and Bairnsdale Fire Station will not be relocated any time soon.
 
“Unfortunately from a first glance there is no further detail on the Hope Restart Centre. It also seems the Omeo and Tambo Valley communities’ calls for the development of a mountain bike park have been ignored and Lakes Entrance, our second biggest town, received nothing, while Maffra and Heyfield also missed out,” said Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
 
“We never even got a matching commitment to replace our long-haul carriages, so under Labor you will have the same old train sets for the next four years.
 
“Daniel Andrews’ Labor government is happy to pour $25 million into metro project blowouts, but he can’t seem to get his cheque book past Melbourne’s tram tracks for these vital projects and investments in Gippsland East.”
 
Mr Bull said perhaps the most disappointing aspect was no news on the Hope Restart Centre, the drug and alcohol residential rehabilitation facility, but he will continue fighting for this investment.
 
“I really feel this is a ‘no brainer’ for the Government and after many meetings and discussions with the Minister over past months I am very surprised to see only references to a facility that will be established in Gippsland. This is no progress on what we have known for months.
 
“Given my colleague Darren Chester secured $3 million in Federal funding for the project and there has been a very significant matching philanthropic commitment for the facility in East Gippsland plus further fundraising by the local committee, I don’t see why the Andrews Government is refusing to say where it will be built.
 
“With Labor beating its chest about infrastructure spending, I was anticipating at least one or two projects for our communities.
 
“Another disappointment is the lack of funding for Bairnsdale Secondary College. The old buildings at the secondary college leak every time it rains yet this Labor Government don’t think we are a priority. Instead some other school communities who had not even lobbied for upgrades, have received funding they didn’t ask for!
 
“It was the same last year after a new police station was announced at Mallacoota when Orbost was clearly the force’s top local priority. Labor are so city-centric and out of touch with our communities they don’t even know what our priority projects are.
 
“This government has had budgets totalling over $250 billion over the past four years, so it’s truly astounding Daniel Andrews has not been able to spare the funds we need for priority projects like Bairnsdale Secondary College.
 
“The Minister said in February 2015 he would come to the school when his diary permitted but more than three years later we are still waiting, which just proves again how little regard Daniel Andrews and his Labor Government has for our community,” Mr Bull said.
 
Caption: Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, runs an eye over today’s State Budget papers, which reveal little joy for people in rural and regional areas.
 
Tuesday, May 1, 2018
Published in Media
Tuesday, 01 May 2018 09:13

Patch job doesn’t make up for Labor neglect

The Fixing Country Roads fund, announced by the Andrews Labor Government last week, is scraps off the table after neglecting the local roads network for three years, according to Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
 
“Our communities have been short-changed big time after Labor came to office and scrapped the Country Roads and Bridges Program in 2015,” Mr Bull said.
 
“This $160 million program was highly successful and provided funding directly to regional and rural councils over a four-year period. The Government is now playing catch up with the Fixing Country Roads fund, which offers a significantly lower dollar amount and runs for half the time.
 
“Just recently we announced that if elected in November, the Liberal Nationals will restore the Country Roads and Bridges Program, and this was welcomed by the Wellington and East Gippsland Shires, which have already identified potential projects,” he said.
 
Mr Bull said Daniel Andrews and Labor could not be trusted when it comes to regional roads funding.
 
“Upon coming to office, the Premier for Melbourne spent rural roads funds around his suburban electorate of Mulgrave, instead of in country Victoria,” he said
 
“He chose to reduce speed limits instead of actually properly repairing damaged roads surfaces and there are examples of that occurring here in East Gippsland.
 
“There were also cuts to the Road Asset Management Budget and Road Operations and Network Improvement Budget.
 
“Only an elected Liberal Nationals government will invest in regional Victoria so we can decentralise our population and economy and grow all our communities – not just Melbourne.”
 
Tuesday, May 1, 2018
Published in Media
Thursday, 26 April 2018 11:08

Gippsland trainers to benefit from Cranbourne facility

Thoroughbred trainers from right across Gippsland will benefit from the establishment of a state-of-the-art veterinary hospital in Cranbourne.
 
Gippsland East Nationals MP and Shadow Minister for Racing, Tim Bull, and Leader of the Opposition, Matthew Guy, today announced if elected in November, the Liberal Nationals would contribute $1.5 million to help establish the facility.
 
“This is a fantastic announcement for the many thoroughbred trainers across Gippsland,” he said.
 
“This equine centre will have the capacity for the latest scanning facilities.
 
“Anyone currently wishing to access such technology would have to travel to Werribee or Ballarat, so this development is much closer to home.
 
“New scanning technology will transform treatment of a range of common but difficult-to-diagnose equine health issues, including lower respiratory tract diseases, viral and bacterial infections, and exercise pulmonary haemorrhage (EIPH).”
 
Mr Bull said the Liberal Nationals’ contribution is to be matched by industry funds to provide the balance of the $3m cost of establishing the hospital.
 
Cranbourne is home to Victoria and Australia’s largest thoroughbred training centre, with 140 licensed trainers and 1400 horses training there.
 
Caption: Gippsland East Nationals MP and Shadow Minister for Racing, Tim Bull, Leader of the Opposition, Matthew Guy, and Liberal Party candidate for Cranbourne, Ann-Marie Hermans, discuss the proposal with Robbie Griffiths, of Griffiths Racing, this morning.
 
Thursday, April 26, 2018
Published in Media
Thursday, 26 April 2018 09:49

Hope for local projects in State Budget

Funding for the Bairnsdale Fire Station relocation, a new police building at Orbost, the Hope residential rehabilitation facility and proposed Omeo mountain bike park are among the local priorities that will hopefully appear in next Tuesday’s State Budget papers, according to Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
 
“There are a number of fantastic proposals that have been floated with this government and while it is unrealistic to think we will get all, it would be good if this government could provide the funds for at least a couple of these projects,” Mr Bull said.
 
“One project I am optimistic about is funding for the Hope residential rehabilitation centre.
 
“Over the past 12 months I have had several fruitful discussions with the Minister on this project that have left me with a level of confidence it will be announced as clearly it is the most advanced option for such a facility in Gippsland.
 
“This is thanks to the great community volunteer working group effort, led by Peter and Margaret Down, Richard Rijs and John Glynn.
 
Mr Bull said the region’s highest priority is the redevelopment of Bairnsdale Secondary College, however given stage two funding was not included in last week’s pre-budget announcements, it would be highly unlikely if this appeared.
 
“Having had stage one funded and built under the former Liberal National Government (with a commitment to stage two), this continues to be completely ignored,” he said.
 
“A clear indication of the need is that the library and an adjoining classroom have again recently been shut down after the constant flow of water every time it rains has created a mould in the walls that makes the areas unusable.”
 
Mr Bull said continued investment into the roads network was another requirement.
 
“This was noted by Shadow Minister for Roads and Infrastructure David Hodgett during his visit to the region last week to announce that an elected Liberal Nationals government would reinstate the $160m Country Roads and Bridges Program,” he said.
 
“These are just some of the many priorities for the Gippsland East electorate.”
 
Thursday, April 26, 2018
Published in Media
Monday, 23 April 2018 12:17

College appears to have missed out … again

Bairnsdale Secondary College appears to have again been denied redevelopment funding from this year’s State Budget, to be handed down next week, with Labor today spruiking maintenance funding to some local schools, but making no reference to the badly needed stage-two college works.
 
Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, says while it is pleasing some maintenance funding for some schools has been announced, it is disappointing Bairnsdale Secondary appears to have been overlooked for the fourth consecutive year.
 
“The present situation at the school is the library and one classroom are out of action after another rain event flooded the building and has resulted in mould taking over the wall cavities,” he said.
 
“Ridiculously this will be the fifth costly major repair in three years.
 
“It is throwing good money after bad when the Government should just fund the stage two works.
 
“Stage one of this redevelopment was provided under the previous Liberal Nationals Government, with a commitment to stage two in 2014, but here we are today with still no promise for this rebuild under four years of the Andrews Labor Government,” Mr Bull said.
 
Mr Bull said the Education Minister had also failed to visit Bairnsdale Secondary College, despite promising to do so over three years ago in February 2015 “when his diary permitted”.
 
Monday, April 23, 2018
Published in Media
Monday, 23 April 2018 12:14

Dredge gets Shadow Minister’s approval

The Tommy Norton dredge has been given the tick of approval by Shadow Minister for Ports, David Hodgett, who labelled the vessel a “tremendous asset” during last Thursday’s visit to Lakes Entrance with Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
 
Mr Bull said he was pleased to host the Liberal Party Leader in Lakes Entrance, giving him an in-depth reminder about the importance of maintaining a navigable entrance to Bass Strait, while discussing other matters relating to the local economy.
 
“From Bullock Island, David and I were able to view the Tommy Norton while in operation in the channels and this was pleasing given he was the responsible Minister for the previous Liberal Nationals Government, which opened expressions of interest for its construction in 2014,” Mr Bull said.
 
Mr Hodgett said he was impressed by the capabilities of the trailing suction hopper dredge, which ensures the entrance will remain navigable in the longer term.
 
“This entrance serves the tourism and commercial and recreational fishing industries, with the port generating an estimated $200 million annually, so it is vital safe access is maintained,” he said.
 
Also the Shadow Minister for Roads and Infrastructure, Mr Hodgett used his time in the region to view the state of the local road networks.
 
“Having recently announced that an elected Liberal Nationals government will reinstate the $160 million Country Roads and Bridges Program, it was pleasing to have a look at some local projects that may receive funding through this fund,” he said.
 
“This is a program that was scrapped by the Andrews Labor Government in 2015 and provided $1m per year directly to regional and rural shires across the state, including East Gippsland,” he said.
 
 
Caption: Gippsland East MP, Tim Bull, and Shadow Minister for Ports, David Hodgett, on Bullock Island at Lakes Entrance this morning, chatting about issues affecting the local economy and watching the Tommy Norton in operation.
 
 
Monday, April 23, 2018
Published in Media
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