Eagles’ netballers set to soar!
New netball courts, lighting and refurbished change rooms will be provided at Maffra Football Netball Club thanks to $435,000 in funds provided by Wellington Shire Council, Maffra FNC and the State Government.
Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, said the upgrade was badly needed and congratulated the shire and club for their contributions that leveraged the state funds.
Maffra FNC secretary, Paul Bourke, said the upgrade would modernise what were becoming out of date facilities.
“We are part of a major league and when you see the facilities of some of the other clubs, we were falling behind, so this will bring us right up to standard and it is exciting for the club and the netball players,” he said.
Mr Bull, who chatted with some of the players once the announcement had been made, said the current conditions clearly showed the work needed to be done.
“Being here today, there is one corner of the main court under water and the surface has become slippery in wet conditions with two players recently seriously injured, after slipping and falling.
“Maffra FNC has such a proud history and it was pleasing to hear from the women that they have plenty of numbers and are going well this season. Participation in sport is a great thing and good facilities only enhance this,” he said.
Wellington Shire Council Mayor, Cr Garry Stephens added, “The netball courts at the Maffra Recreation Reserve are in need of redevelopment and Council is pleased to have attracted funding to ensure this important project can take place. We look forward to working with the State Government and the football netball club to see this project into fruition.”
Caption: State member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, with club secretary, Paul Bourke; netball operations manager Tracey Shelton and Chairman of Selectors Maddie Sly; and players Jasmyn Henning, Abbie Ross and Maddie Davis inspecting the netball courts that will soon be upgraded.
Heyfield RSL to receive upgrade
Heyfield RSL, which recently marked its centenary, is to receive $19,000 for upgrades to its Hall under the Veterans Capital Works Grant Program.
Nationals Member for Gippsland East and Shadow Minister for Veterans, Tim Bull, is delighted the Sub-Branch was successful in its application.
“This is good news and a just reward for the hard work of the Heyfield RSL Sub-Branch committee,” said Mr Bull.
“It’s a terrific little Sub-Branch that through its proactiveness has seen improvements over a period of time. The venue is a valuable asset to the community and this money will go a long way toward improving them for everyone’s enjoyment.
“We should never forget that it is solely from the service of our veterans that we enjoy the lives we live today.
“It is remarkable that Heyfield RSL has been continuously providing vital support to veterans and their families in the district for more than 100 years.”
Sub-Branch president, Greg Mackenzie, said the grant would help to give the facilities a whole new lease of life.
“We plan to address several long-standing occupational health and safety issues and install new security lighting, air conditioning, curtains and bring the well- worn timber floors back to their former glory,” he said.
“I would like to acknowledge the wonderful assistance our committee received from Jane Harvie in putting this grant submission together.”
The Veterans Capital Works Grant Program grants are made available for projects which support building and facility improvements for not-for-profit organisations delivering services to veterans, their families and communities.
Caption: Nationals Member for Gippsland East and Shadow Minister for Veterans, Tim Bull, pictured with Heyfield RSL President Greg Mackenzie, discussing the proposed upgrades earmarked for the Heyfield RSL clubrooms.
Monday, 28 June 2021
Bull takes local housing shortage to Parliament
The housing shortage in East Gippsland was a topic for discussion in State Parliament this week after it was raised by Nationals MP, Tim Bull.
Mr Bull sought immediate attention to be given to the current housing crisis in not only East Gippsland, but other areas of the state also and suggested the government explore the use of modular homes, similar to what was provided in the bushfire response, to address the current crisis.
“They are neat, self-contained and as we saw, can be quickly constructed. If this was able to be done for the bushfire crisis, I would hope the government could do it for this housing crisis.
“This would require government to work with local shires to identify sites and gain approvals. Yes, there will be things to work through, but it should be investigated,” he said.
Housing Minister, Richard Wynne, responded to Mr Bull by stating “the Member for Gippsland East and I have had many discussions in relation to the question of housing provision in his electorate and indeed on the issues of housing supply in regional Victoria more generally.”
“Modular housing, as he knows, was provided to his community in those fire-ravaged areas, and that has been a very successful program.
“We have piloted a number of projects, and I point particularly to one that we did in Ballarat Road in Footscray where we have put in place modular housing there for people who have been rough sleeping, and we will do more of this.
“We will be looking for opportunities to partner with local governments, because as the member knows, where you have a land component that is put in by another party, it just stretches the public dollars so much further.
“I appreciate the member’s ongoing interest and commitment to the provision of social and affordable housing in his area, and I will continue to work with him,” said Minister Wynne.
Earlier, in asking his question, Mr Bull said a ‘perfect storm’ had occurred in his electorate that was putting pressure on rental markets and housing supply.
“I have chats with many locals seeking housing and also several real estate agents and contributing factors I have been advised of include:
- The real estate market has risen rapidly with homes of all styles selling for peak prices and many who owned rental properties have decided to cash in.
- New laws that require rental properties to be upgraded to new standards has resulted in landlords choosing to sell rather than having to spend the funds
- Locally, people who lost their homes in bushfires remain in rental properties as they work through approvals to rebuild and then have to engage builders who are in short supply
- COVID has led to many people becoming accustomed to working remotely, so people are choosing to keep their metro properties but work remotely from country rentals. This also allows them to escape metro COVID lockdowns.
- Over COVID, tenants were given a rent exemption, and this placed some landlords under financial duress as they were relying on this income for their own needs, so they are now deciding to sell.
“All of these factors are contributing to a shortage of rental properties with many being booted from rentals and facing homelessness and unable to secure new rentals,” Mr Bull told Parliament.
Following the response from Minister Wynne, Mr Bull said he would now be contacting East Gippsland and Wellington Shires to encourage further discussions with the Department of Housing on identifying land to progress the options for emergency public housing being secured for the region.
Monday, 28 June 2021
VicHealth grants connect East Gippsland
Nationals Member for Gippsland East Tim Bull has congratulated five local community and sporting groups, who have been successful in receiving funding under the VicHealth Reimagining Health Grants program.
The local clubs will share in the $3 million of Vic Health funding to help communities reconnect and improve health, in the wake of the Black Summer Bushfires and coronavirus pandemic.
“This much-needed funding from VicHealth will ensure local organisations can continue supporting our community to build back better from the loss of connection endured post bushfires and coronavirus,” said Mr Bull, who served on the VicHealth Board for three years.
The five local community groups will use the grants to boost participation and encouraging physical activity while reinstating social connections.
The following successful community local groups are:
• Bairnsdale Scout Group received $10,000 to deliver a sustained water active program next summer.
• Metung Swan Reach Cricket Club received $10,000 towards establishing a women’s season including providing players with equipment, uniforms and coaching to facilitate training and matches.
• Gippsland Bowls Region received $3,000 to establish a junior bowls program for young people aged between 10-18 years of age to encourage participation in bowls.
• Football Victoria will deliver weekly soccer clinics in a variety of local schools across East Gippsland.
• Cinespace Inc. will receive $3,000 to expand the Smartphone stories project that mentors local East Gippsland indigenous and non-indigenous creatives in digital storytelling workshops.
“This funding has allowed new initiatives and programs to be delivered in our region, providing opportunities with a focus on youth and female participation,” Mr Bull said.
“Involvement within a club creates positive social connections that includes a sense of belonging within the local community.
“I wish to congratulate the successful applicants and thank our wonderful volunteer organisations for taking proactive steps towards providing greater opportunities for our community.”
Caption: Nationals State MP Tim Bull congratulated Bairnsdale Scout Group after meeting with Scout Leader Catherine Mullins, Leader and parent Phil Mehlert together with Scouts Ava Felix and Chase, who will benefit from the VicHealth funding.
Restriction changes for Victoria from 11:59pm June 17
GAR landslip issues must be fixed
After three land slips and road closures on the Great Alpine Road (GAR) in recent months, there are calls for remediation works to be fast tracked.
Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, who has led the calls in State Parliament, said he was told last November funds had been allocated, after raising the matter in the Legislative Assembly.
“The irony was that last week the GAR was closed as a pre-emptive measure as road slips were predicted after the heavy rain. If we are at a stage where the landslips are being predicted, surely it is time to fast track the work to fix it,” he said.
Mr Bull wrote to the Minister last year after retired engineers raised concerns that the steep rock faces would almost certainly result in rock falls.
“I received a response that stated geotechnical assessments were underway and that funds had been allocated to the Namestone Point area of the Great Alpine for works. It also said the site was a highest priority and further slips were a potential hazard.
“The response went on to say potential solutions were rock netting, benching, rock anchors or other treatments.
“That was in early November, but here we are seven months later with no work having commenced and no announcement of when it will be started or finished.
“It is really not good enough given it is very difficult to predict when a rock fall will occur that could claim a life. When you know there is a fault that is life threatening, it should be fixed pronto.
“The work should have been done when the road was widened. It just should not have been left like this without being finished properly. Those with experience in the field said this would happen and they have been proven right.
“So I am urging VicRoads to get in there and get it sorted before we have a disaster,” Mr Bull said.
Caption: Image supplied of the recent Great Alpine Road landslip which caused the road closure in May.
Tuesday, 15 June 2021