Items filtered by date: February 2019
Monday, 25 February 2019 13:02

Hannah’s overseas study tour awaits

Nagle College student Hannah Martin will soon visit culturally significant war sites in Vietnam and Singapore as part of an overseas study tour, having been recognised as a Spirit of ANZAC Prize winner.
 
The Spirit of ANZAC Prize is a competition open to Year 9 and 10 students across Victoria, with winners receiving the opportunity to participate in study tours to sites where Australians have served in times of war and peacekeeping.
 
Gippsland East Nationals MP and Shadow Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Tim Bull, was on hand at a special ceremony in Melbourne recently to congratulate the Year 11 student – one of only 22 from across the state – on her successful submission.
 
“There aren’t many people who get the chance to travel overseas to further their knowledge in Australia’s war history, so this really is an opportunity of a lifetime for Hannah, especially at just 16 years of age,” Mr Bull said.
 
As part of her submission, Hannah wrote a poem about her “Pop Bailey”, who she never met but heard her father speak of his time in World War II.
 
“I have always found poems to convey emotions and personal experiences while also relaying stories and historical information. Further, I connect well with poetry and find it an intimate way to convey hard facts,” Hannah said in her statement of intention.
 
“Researching for and writing this poem has taught me much about the experiences and perspectives of Australians during the war. I cannot even fathom how these people held strong and kept battling in the harshest of conditions.”
 
Mr Bull said Nagle College has had a number of successful applicants over recent years, with students travelling to Gallipoli and the Western Front to help commemorate 100 years of the ANZAC legacy.
 
The Prize is open to students in Years 9 and 10 currently enrolled in all Victorian Government, Catholic and Independent Schools. As part of the program, 20 regional finalists will also visit Canberra and be invited to attend the Premier's ANZAC Day Luncheon.
 
Caption: Gippsland East Nationals MP and Shadow Minister for Veterans Affairs, Tim Bull congratulates Nagle College’s Hannah Martin on her prize winning entry alongside Minister Robin Scott.
 
Monday, February 25, 2019
Published in Media
Monday, 25 February 2019 12:53

Trail must not affect timber industry

Labor’s latest attempt to drive East Gippsland’s timber industry to extinction has been questioned in State Parliament by Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
 
Mr Bull condemned Labor’s secret $1.5 million election commitment to fund planning for a Sea to Summit walking trail in East Gippsland – which was buried in an announcement that was made on the other side of the state in Anglesea, without consultation with local people and without any effort to advise local media.
 
“Local timber representatives have told me they weren’t consulted at all and only found out about this via an article in Melbourne media a week ago.
 
“Given these concerns, last week I formally asked the Agriculture Minister to outline what consultation actually occurred with the timber industry prior to this announcement being made,” Mr Bull said.
 
“I’m seeking information on where, when and with whom it occurred, particularly in light of recent commentary that stated that even VicForests, the Government’s own agency, was not consulted on the proposal,” he said.
 
Mr Bull also asked the Minister if the proposed trail would impact on currently allocated harvesting areas and, should it be established, to provide a guarantee there will be no overall loss of resource to the timber industry.
 
“My office had discussions with supporters of this project pre-election and while not unsupportive of walking trails and tourist attractions, there are valid questions that remain unanswered with respect to impact on existing timber harvest areas and plans allocate other suitable areas to industry, to ensure there is no net loss of timber harvesting resource,” he said. 
 
Mr Bull said it was alarming the plan was not communicated locally and questioned why Labor‘s candidates, Mark Reeves and Jane Garrett and Upper House Member Harriet Shing were silent on this pre-election.
 
“The answer, I believe, is they knew it would be popular with inner-city lefties and unpopular with people and communities in East Gippsland who rely on the timber industry for jobs and to support our local economy.”
 
Monday, February 25, 2019
Published in Media
Monday, 25 February 2019 12:50

Minister, please meet affected Lakes fishers

Victoria’s Fishing and Boating Minister has been asked to personally meet with the Gippsland Lakes commercial fishing licence holders that are subject to the State Government’s buyback.
 
Mr Bull used Parliament to ask Minister Jaala Pulford to visit Lakes Entrance to meet with licence holders subject to the netting ban, along with their families, only days after she announced – via radio – the proposed April 2020 exit date.
 
“My understanding is that the Minister has not had any discussions with these licence holders at all, either prior to the announcement, which was made on a metropolitan fishing show, or post the announcement,” Mr Bull told Parliament last week.
 
“The licence holders are very disappointed they had no contact from the Minister prior to the announcement and in fact they state that at a meeting at the Lakes Entrance Fishermen’s Co-Operative early last year, she advised there would be no announcements in relation to Gippsland Lakes commercial fishing licences pre-election.
 
“So given the claim no consultation took place prior and the Minister is yet to meet with this group personally, I asked her to commit to this.
 
“The Minister commented on ABC radio this week she had been ‘actively discouraged from talking to the fishers and instead encouraged to work through Seafood Industry Victoria’ but that is not the case.
 
“Licence holders are happy to be represented want Seafood Industry Victoria on certain elements, but the licence holders have always made it clear they wanted to personally meet with the Minister herself in relation to her decision and some specific aspects.
 
“They want to meet with you, Minister, and it is something you ought to do,” he said.
 
Mr Bull said had later had some brief discussions with the Minister on the matter and she had indicated she would make herself available to meet.
 
Mr Bull has also asked the Regional Development Minister when the $1.5 million earmarked for the proposed major LEFCOL upgrades will be provided.
 
“Just like the commercial netting ban, the then-Minister made this promise via a commercial fishing show without even speaking to LEFCOL board members, so I am interested to know when monies will be allocated as they are keen to get these proposed works underway,” he said.
 
“It appears they simply copied our pre-election commitment for this project, announcing it in Melbourne, with no contact immediately prior to, or after, the announcement.
 
Caption: Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, has urged Victoria’s Fishing and Boating Minister to meet with Gippsland Lakes commercial fishing licence holders as a matter of priority.
  
Monday, February 25, 2019
Published in Media
Friday, 22 February 2019 12:48

Farmers say drought package falls well short

Today’s announcement by Agriculture Minister Jaclyn Symes of new drought relief measures has fallen well short of farmer expectations with Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, describing it as “disappointingly light”.
 
“One farmer who is eligible for $2,500 under the Minister’s announcement said ‘I will throw that on the ground in the next two days’.
 
“He said he was feeding pellets every second day to his sheep at a cost of $1,500 per day and silage the alternate day at a cost of $900 per day,” Mr Bull said.
 
“That shows you how insignificant this package is, farmers I have contacted this morning just keep telling me it is well short of making any real difference.
 
“Another who pays $40,000 in rates, said $2,500 was not the support he was expecting.
 
“The Minister built up expectations of full rate relief this week by saying it was ‘on the table’ in local media during the week.
 
“To fully subsidise Farm rates in the East Gippsland Shire would have been $4.9million with municipal charges included and in Wellington Shire it is $10.1 million and this would have been a better spend. It is what the farming families wanted – they made this very clear.
 
“It is also not a lot when you compare the supports that have been provided over the border in NSW.
 
“Pre-Christmas I was talking to one farmer at the cattle sales who had spent $450,000 on feed since May. That would be well and truly over half a million now. He would only be eligible for the $2,500 payment so that is not going to do much,” Mr Bull said.
 
“To have the Minister say she will come back in a few months if it hasn’t rained is not good enough, the time for real action was months ago, and at the latest, on her visit today.
 
“Waiting months again is a sign she does not understand the problem or the urgency,” said Mr Bull.
 
Friday, February 22, 2019
Published in Media
Friday, 22 February 2019 12:43

Cricket grants will support drought areas

Cricket clubs across East Gippsland looking to upgrade their infrastructure or purchase new equipment can apply to two streams of funding from Cricket Australia.
 
Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, is encouraging Bairnsdale Cricket Association and its affiliated clubs to submit an application to the Australian Cricket Infrastructure Fund, which is also open to councils, and the Grassroots Cricket Fund.
 
“The Grassroots Cricket Fund is open to clubs situated only in regional and rural areas, with a focus on supporting those in drought-impacted areas, while the Australian Cricket Infrastructure Fund (ACIF) is a larger stream for major projects,” Mr Bull said.
 
“I have had discussions with Cricket Victoria, which administers the ACIF on behalf of the national body, and they said they would be happy to give strong consideration from applicants in drought-impacted areas who require assistance.”
 
The Grassroots Cricket Fund offers up to $2500 for equipment, while the ACIF offers three categories, with a 50 per cent contribution required:
 
• Community Cricket Infrastructure – Minor: $1000 to $10,000;
• Community Cricket Infrastructure – Major: $10,000 to $50,000; and
• Strategic Infrastructure Grant: $50,000+.
 
“As an active playing member at St Mary’s Nagle and one who visits clubs and facilities regularly, I can see how these two programs would significantly benefit and support cricketers and volunteers in our region,” Mr Bull said.
 
“Clubs do a great job in raising funds to put back into their facilities through sponsorships, donations and raffles, but these two completely new grant streams could be game-changers.
 
“The drought takes a toll on all within our communities. As the purse strings tighten in our farming sector, our many small businesses and traders, who support our clubs and associations so well, begin to feel the impact and this funding opportunity could take the pressure off at a time of need, so I encourage all to apply.”
 
Both grant programs close on March 31 and more information can be found at https://www.cricketvictoria.com.au/grants/
 
Friday, February 22, 2019
Published in Media
Thursday, 21 February 2019 10:56

Road barrier installation rethink needed

Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, has renewed calls in State Parliament for the Government to pause the road barrier program between Bairnsdale and Stratford, following the decision to abandon the installation of centre barriers on Paynesville Road.
 
“I stress that I am not opposed to barriers being installed in the right locations, but in relation to priorities in the region, this is not hitting the target,” Mr Bull said.
 
“We have barriers being installed in areas along the highway adjacent to flat open paddocks, where if you ran off the road, all you would hit is a sheep if you were unlucky.
 
“This while we have areas like the Great Alpine Road that are heavily treed or have cliff-face drop-offs and need barriers – but are getting nothing.
 
“Quite simply, where would you prefer a barrier if you were to run off the road – stopping you from entering a flat open paddock, or stopping you from hitting a large tree or going off a cliff face?
 
“So what I am asking is that in these areas we have a rethink like occurred on the Paynesville Road and allow common sense to prevail.”
 
Mr Bull also raised the condition of the Princes Highway between Stratford and Sale where new road works are being completed.
 
“The Member for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien and I have been inundated with complaints about how a new section of road can be so bad, crumbling within months of being laid,” Mr Bull said.
 
“Then even the repairs have failed. New roads should not crumble like that. VicRoads must hold its contractors to higher levels of road building and not make lame excuses about weather being the cause.
 
“Former (older) Roads Board workers have told me we have had no extreme weather events outside normal summer temperatures that should have caused that level of failure and I tend to agree with them,” he said.
 
Caption: Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, has renewed calls in State Parliament for the Government to pause the road barrier program between Bairnsdale and Stratford.
 
Thursday, February 21, 2019
Published in Media
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