Bath, Shing retain upper house seats

David Braithwaite

FOUR of the five positions for the Eastern Victoria upper house region were retained by incumbents.

The Victorian Electoral Commission confirmed state election results for the upper house on Tuesday.

Edward O’Donohue (Liberals), Melina Bath (Nationals) kept their spots after their tickets secured enough primary votes to reach the quota required, while Labor’s top candidate Jane Garrett moves from her Melbourne-based lower house seat to Eastern Victoria.

While she received the Ms Garrett’s surplus vote, Labor’s second candidate Harriett Shing still required preferences from minor parties to retain her seat.

Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party incumbent Jeff Bourman kept his seat, with preferences moving him ahead of the Greens’ Tom Cummings.

Mr Bourman received 4.9 per cent of the primary vote, compared to 6.42 for Mr Cummings.

Ms Garrett has been appointed Parliamentary Secretary for Jobs in the government, and Ms Shing Parliamentary Secretary for Mental Health.

Ms Bath is the only Nationals MP in the upper house.

“The state wide election result has been a bitter sweet situation with some good friends and colleagues losing their positions, however, overall, the Nationals’ primary vote held up well across regional Victoria,” Ms Bath said.

“I do not take my role for granted and I understand what a privilege it is to serve.”

Ms Bath said she is determined to hold the Labor government to account to deliver on the promises made to the people of Gippsland.