Member of Lions Club – State Parliament
There remains a high level of concern over the slow rebuild of public tourist facilities after the East Gippsland fires and local MP’s want to see some action.
Local State and Federal representatives, Tim Bull and Darren Chester visited Cape Conran this week, where work has not yet commenced on restoring the infrastructure destroyed five months ago.
“These facilities are so critical to our local economy and best example of this is a quote from a local Marlo businessman who said ‘when Conran is open, I do well and it allows me to employ more local people’ – but as it sits now, little is happening and we have no timeframe,” said Mr Bull.
“It is public facilities right across the region, but Conran is a great example. The steps down to the beach at Salmon Rocks remain destroyed as they were in early January and similarly, the East Cape boardwalk still has ‘do not enter’ tape across its entry. It is just not good enough.
“Parks Victoria and the Minister need to understand the importance of having this rebuilt as a matter of urgency and provide all in the community with a timeframe. Five months down the track surely that is not too much to ask,” he said.
Mr Chester said years of cutting work crews at agencies like Parks Victoria had added to the problem.
“We need more boots and less suits,” Mr Chester said.
“We need more boots on the ground getting the work done in East Gippsland and less suits in Melbourne finding excuses to delay the projects. The local crews are completely under-staffed and we should be hiring more permanent outdoor workers to properly maintain the public land estate.
“There’s no reason why all the damaged infrastructure on public land in East Gippsland can’t be replaced or repaired by the September school holidays to ensure our region is able to recover when travel restrictions are lifted.”
Caption: Local MP Tim Bull, pictured at the closed entrance to Salmon Rocks beach at Cape Conran with Federal member for Gippsland Darren Chester where bushfire restoration works have not been commenced.