Canidate statements – Gippsland South

AS a born and bred Gippslander, I am dedicated to ensuring a better deal for Gippsland South.

I’ve worked hard over the past three and a half years to represent Gippsland South with pride. I’ve met face-to-face with over 600 constituents who needed help with state government representation, helped hundreds more by email and over the phone and travelled some 200,000 kilometres servicing the electorate.

Despite the city-centric attitude of the Andrews Labor government a lot has been achieved in Gippsland South, but we can do so much better with the Nationals in government.

The Nationals have a plan to decentralise our state which includes high-speed rail delivering a Sale to Melbourne journey time of 91 minutes within 10 years, a dedicated Gippsland rail line through Melbourne to improve reliability, along with $633 million for new, faster and more comfortable modern trains.

We’ve allocated $9 million to get the Princes Highway duplication back on track after Labor failed to provide any funding, we’ve announced a $1 billion Road Fix Blitz policy to properly fix regional roads and we’ll halt Labor’s botched roll-out of wire rope barriers and do it properly.

We’ve also committed to fairer rates for farmers, reduced regional payroll tax to stimulate jobs growth, build a new Yarram fire station, give more funding to local councils to fix and maintain country roads, reduce the cost of living and build a new TAFE campus in Sale.

I AM a third generation farmer from Gormandale, sharing and successfully implementing principles of regenerative farming for over 30 years.

With two grown up children making their own way in the world, I understand the importance of responsible policy and planning for the future.

I want to see changes to the way politics is done in this country and have welcomed the state Labor government’s moves to ban large donations to political parties from corporations.

The Greens plan, costed by the Parliamentary Budget Office, for a coordinated transition to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030 would deliver a renewable energy grid that serves the people rather than corporate interests. By creating new jobs, cleaner air, bringing down electricity prices and addressing global warming.

Protecting our natural resources, ending the privatisation experiment, tightening gambling regulations, and increasing bus and train services, are all part of the Greens’ policy platform, viewable online.

The old parties have been asleep at the wheel, allowing corporations to have too much say in government decisions and eroding our democracy.

Poor planning around resource management is threatening extinction of some of our iconic native animals and has led us to crisis in our timber industry, our climate, our fishing industry, waste management and our manufacturing.

Bringing energy and public transport back into public hands are important steps in getting our state back on track along with stemming the flow of gambling money out of our region that starves our retailers of income.

COMING from a local dairy farming family. I understand the concerns of Gippsland South farmers and small businesses who rely on farming income during this time of drought.

My priorities are fighting for our region through improved health funding, better public transport connecting the region and protecting Gippsland’s environment.

Farmers across Gippsland have made it clear that they want to protect the industry and their land from the impacts of fracking and coal seam gas imports.

Labor will also provide $1 million for export focused marketing activities to promote our clean and green food and fibre sector to the world.

A re-elected Andrews Labor government will give the Gippsland Lakes back to recreational anglers, phasing out commercial fishing to boost local tourism and create jobs.

Removing the nets from the Gippsland Lakes will mean more fish for recreational anglers and more fishing tourists for the local economy.

Labor is serious about providing clean renewable power with huge investments in clean energy technologies.

They will drive energy security while keeping downward pressure on energy prices.

I welcome Labor’s commitment to rollout three-year-old kinder in Gippsland by 2020, if re-elected. Three-year-old kindergarten will come to our community first — because nothing is more important than the future of our kids.

I also understand that there are many families in Gippsland doing it tough and they deserve a fair go.

If elected I shall work for you in ensuring that Gippsland South is not taken for granted any more.

(Candidates list in ballot paper order)