Gippsland: Home To New Jobs, Industries And Families

The Andrews Labor Government is helping the Latrobe Valley and Gippsland regions recover from the jobs crisis and four years of Coalition cuts to local schools, hospitals and services.

The 2015-16 Victorian Budget invests in the things that local families need to live a healthy, safe and comfortable life, and funds the projects that communities and businesses need to create jobs and drive growth.

In the jobs crisis that gripped our state over the last four years, regional Victoria fared the worst. Iconic businesses closed down, many more teetered on the edge, and young people packed up and left town in search of jobs.

The Budget invests $500 million in a Regional Jobs and Infrastructure Fund. Within it, the $200 million Regional Jobs Fund will support projects to give established industries a real future and emerging industries a real chance.

The $250 million Regional Infrastructure Development Fund will support the development of new centres and attractions to boost business and bring more visitors to regional Victoria.

TAFE cuts hit regional Victoria the hardest. The Budget invests $300 million to complete the TAFE Rescue Fund, which will help regional campuses like at Federation University TAFE find their feet and offer more courses.

Crucial regional Local Learning and Employment Networks (LLENs) such as Baw Baw Latrobe LLEN, Gippsland East LLEN, South Gippsland LLEN and Bass Coast LLEN have had their funding secured, to ensure disengaged kids are supported to get the skills they need for the jobs they want.

The previous Coalition Government cut funds for new school buildings by half. Across Gippsland, kids were learning and teachers were working in rundown, uncomfortable and crowded classrooms.

The Budget invests $324.6 million to rebuild, renovate or refurbish Victorian schools, including 21 in regional Victoria. A new state of the art primary school has been funded with the merger of Tobruk Street, Commercial Road and Crinigan Road primary schools.

The Labor Government will also deliver a new Sale Specialist School and Kurnai College will receive a much needed upgrade.

Secondary students deserve a head start on a hands-on vocation. The Budget provides $12 million to support and establish Tech Schools across the state including one in Gippsland.

Gippsland’s nearby National and State Parks will be supported as part of an $11 million program to upgrade dilapidated buildings, toilets, paths and roads. Local recreational fishing opportunities will be supported as part of the Andrews Government’s Target One Million plans to boost recreational fishing and support tourism.

Victoria’s wine industry will also be supported with a $1 million package to boost investment and tourism opportunities, growing jobs across the Gippsland region.

Job creating projects across Gippsland include:

  • $10 million for a new Gippsland Logistics Precinct
  • $1 million for new Latrobe Valley University Training Clinic and Dental Prosthetics Laboratory
  • $9.9 million for Tyers Road bridge upgrade
  • $2.5 million to protect the health of the Gippsland Lakes.

The Budget invests $650 million, much of it in regional Victoria, to fix roads and public transport and upgrade freight corridors, so businesses can get their goods to market sooner and regional families can get to their destinations safer.

The Budget allocates $257 million towards a major investment in 21 new VLocity carriages to carry more passengers on the V/Line network.

The investment in the Cranbourne-Pakenham-Gippsland line will address the significant problems face by Gippsland V/Line commuters, who face the worst blow-outs in travel times in the State. The removal of nine level crossings, alongside the order of new V/Line carriages, will boost capacity, allowing more trains to run more often, with improvements to punctuality.

Under the Coalition, millions of dollars were cut from our health system and thousands of regional families were left behind. That’s why the Labor Government is investing $1.3 billion into Victoria’s hospital system.

The Budget provides almost $100 million to fix the ambulance crisis by reducing response times and upgrading ambulance stations, equipment and vehicles across the state.

The Latrobe Valley community will get a new medical training clinic on the Churchill tertiary campus which will reduce pressure on GP services in Morwell, attract skilled medical professionals and grow jobs through a planned dental prosthetics laboratory.

The Budget is supporting the area to recover from the Hazelwood Mine Fire with $30 million towards implementing the Mine Fire Inquiry. Further funds have been given to support the reopening of the Mine Fire Inquiry to look at mine rehabilitation and the health impacts of the fire, including potential increased mortality rates.

An additional $50 million is to be spent across regional Victoria to reduce bushfire risk through fuel management on public land.

The Budget includes funding to commence the recruitment of 450 additional career fire fighters, $9.6 million for the provision of emergency medical response at integrated stations and $44 million to build and upgrade fire stations and purchase safer and more technologically-advanced fire trucks.

Morwell will get a new emergency services hub comprising both a CFA and an ambulance station.

Users of ice and their distraught families will get the help and support they need, under the Labor Government’s $45.5 million Ice Action Plan. This includes $15 million to provide  Victoria Police with new drug and booze buses.

Quotes attributable to Premier of Victoria, Daniel Andrews

“Over the last four years, too many young people have packed up and left home in search of jobs. That’s why we’re investing in schools, skills and local industries, to get regional cities and towns back to work.”

“Dedicated regional funds will create the jobs of the future, whilst the TAFE Rescue Fund will ensure that kids can get the training they need for the job they want.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria, Harriet Shing

“We’re also keeping locals safe with a new Emergency Services Hub in Morwell for our hard working firefighters and paramedics and fixing the ambulance crisis with funds to improve response times and upgrade equipment.”

“Local kids can’t get a first rate education, in a second rate classroom. That’s why we’re upgrading or rebuilding five Gippsland schools including a new specialist school for Sale.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria, Daniel Mulino

“The Liberals and the Nationals abandoned the Latrobe Valley during the Hazelwood Mine Fire. The Andrews Labor Government will always unashamedly stand up for Gippsland families. ”

“We are implementing each and everyone one of the mine fire inquiry recommendations and ensuring the community gets the long term health study it needs.”

5 May 2015

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