Major boost to fire services

State Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said this week's pre-Budget announcements of a $21.6m boost for bushfire protection and $29m for new CFA trucks, were important announcements for the region.

"These announcements were made by Environment Minister, Ryan Smith and Police and Emergency Services Minister, Kim Wells, and are both very pertinent to East Gippsland, which is one of the most fire prone areas in the world.

"In this region when you are talking fires, it is not a case of "if", but "when" and I am delighted this government is allocating more funds that will assist in better protecting our communities."

Minister Smith said his $21.6m announcement would go towards building and maintaining fire access roads, bridges and upgrading air bases and boost the capacity of fire management teams.

He said $11.6m would ensure more people are more often ready to respond during fire season and $10m would improve forest tracks, bridges and fire-fighting air bases.

Minister Wells, who grew up in the East Gippsland region, said the $29m he announced would go towards the purchase of 78 new CFA vehicles around the state - 74 medium tankers and four prototype vehicles.

"This is a significant investment in rural and regional Victoria that will strengthen our emergency services and make communities safer and provides a major boost to the purchase of fire fighting vehicles.

"In addition to the new vehicles, the Coalition has invested more than $125m over the past three years to fulfil our commitment to build or upgrade 250 CFA stations," he said.