Friday 12 January 2018
Goulburn Ovens Institute of TAFE’s decision to cut dairy training at Warragul and Leongatha raises more questions than it answers.
The Andrews Government must come clean on the number of students who are part way through a traineeship with GOTAFE who will no longer be able to complete their training with the provider.
Given Federation Training does not currently offer these courses, Training Minister Gayle Tierney should also detail what she is doing to ensure students who are stranded can complete their qualifications.
This is the latest sign of instability in training in Gippsland, following revelations one-third of Federation Training’s workforce was sacked in Labor’s first year of government and figures showing a drop of 700,000 student contact hours.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Training, Skills and Apprenticeships Steph Ryan
Daniel Andrews and Gayle Tierney are missing in action yet again while Gippsland students are left in limbo.
The Andrews Government has failed to offer Gippsland trainees any assurances they’ll be able to complete their training.
Labor promised to ‘rescue’ TAFE, but instead have presided over a massive drop in student numbers and staff redundancies.
Comments attributable to Member for Gippsland South Danny O’Brien
Our dairy sector provides vital job opportunities and boosts our local economy.
At a time of great uncertainty for our local dairy sector, the Andrews Labor Government’s silence speaks volumes about their level of care for our region.
Wednesday 10 January 2018
An elected Liberal Nationals government will help Victoria’s High Country communities immortalise their heritage in a new High Country Hall of Fame.
Shadow Minister for Regional Victoria and Decentralisation Peter Walsh will announce the Liberal-Nationals’ commitment at Omeo this weekend at the Mountain Cattlemen’s Association of Victoria Annual Get Together.
“Just as Banjo Patterson immortalised the region in his poem The Man from Snowy River, the High Country Hall of Fame will pay tribute to the people and industries that have shaped this unique region’s history,” Mr Walsh said.
“The Hall of Fame will preserve and celebrate the High Country’s heritage, including the indigenous culture, exploration, the iconic mountain cattlemen, conservation, winter sports and other aspects of high country history, industry and life.
“It will be another attraction and asset to one of Victoria’s iconic tourism regions.”
The Hall of Fame would be established in close consultation with High Country communities to determine the best location and design for the complex.
“Our plan is for a two-step process,” Mr Walsh said.
“Firstly, an expressions of interest phase where interested communities can put forward a bid; and secondly, a shortlist phase where the best three bids would receive financial assistance and help from Regional Development Victoria to prepare detailed business cases.
“High Country communities will have a say on the best location and design for a Hall of Fame that will share their stories with locals and visitors alike.
“If the Liberal Nationals are elected at the November State Election we will ensure the rich history of this iconic region, and the people and industries that have defined it, are preserved and celebrated.
“This will be a place our communities can be proud of and it will add to the outstanding tourism attractions that already draw more than one million people to the High Country every year.”
Tuesday 5 December 2017
Today, Labor’s Roads Minister Luke Donnellan detailed his ‘bold plan’ to fix country Victoria’s deteriorating road network – a new website.
Country Victorians don’t need a website to tell us regional and rural roads have been seriously neglected by the Andrews Labor Government.
What’s worse is that Luke Donnellan’s ‘bold plan’ doesn’t include a cent of new investment to fix country roads.
Despite the potholes and dangerously uneven surfaces littering our country road network, the Andrews Labor Government refuses to reverse its decision to axe the Liberal Nationals’ successful $160 million Country Roads and Bridges Program.
The only ‘bold’ part of Labor’s plan is its absolute determination to ignore the needs of country Victorians.
Thursday 30 November 2017
The Premier and Agriculture Minister today continued to refuse to answer questions in Parliament on Labor’s reported Northcote by-election preference deal with the Animal Justice Party.
AJP Northcote candidate Nina Lenk has said AJP preferenced Labor ahead of the Greens in Northcote “because they were offering us a Victorian welfare group for animals” and “$500,000 for animal organisations and community organisations”.
AJP’s policies include ending livestock farming for a “long-term, total transition to plant-based agriculture” and urge the withdrawal of Government support for animal product industries.
Jaala Pulford continues to evade questions on her decision to announce a new public sector group, Animal Welfare Victoria, and $500,000 of grants on the same day early voting opened for the Northcote by-election.
The Liberal Nationals’ questions have gone unanswered in Parliament this week, including:
- What stakeholders did she consult with before making the decision to form Animal Welfare Victoria?
- Why didn’t she consult the Victorian Farmers Federation, the Australian Veterinary Association or even the RSPCA?
- Was the Minister aware that her decision to form Animal Welfare Victoria and commit $500,000 worth of grants would result in the Animal Justice Party preferencing Labor ahead of The Greens at the Northcote by-election?
- Why didn’t the Minister inform the Livestock Industry Consultative Committee of her decision to form Animal Welfare Victoria, which met with Chief Veterinary Officer Charles Milne four days before AWV was announced?
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Agriculture Peter Walsh
Daniel Andrews and Jaala Pulford have serious questions to answer on this alleged cash for votes deal with the AJP ahead of the Northcote by-election.
Daniel Andrews is proving time and time again he is the Premier for Melbourne and will sell out regional Victorians at any cost.
Wednesday 22 November 2017
The Nationals have announced key dates for Victoria’s first community preselection, to be held in the seat of Shepparton leading up to the 2018 State Election.
Leader of The Nationals in Victoria Peter Walsh and State President Neil Pankhurst were in Shepparton today to announce candidate nominations for the community preselection will open on 12 February 2018 and close on March 9.
Voters registered for the seat of Shepparton will vote in the preselection on April 14 next year, ahead of the State Election in November.
Mr Pankhurst said he was looking forward to opening nominations.
“The community preselection gives the people who know the region best a leading role in choosing who will be The Nationals candidate in the 2018 State Election,” Mr Pankhurst said.
“I look forward to working with the Shepparton Branch and Peter Walsh on this unique opportunity for a truly democratic preselection process.”
The Nationals’ community preselection will be the first ever held in Victoria, giving the Shepparton region a full vote on their elected representative.
“People who live and work in the Shepparton region have a deep understand of what matters to local people,” Mr Walsh said.
“We are looking for candidates who are prepared to be a strong voice for the region in State Parliament and fight for the community’s best interests.”
Candidate nominations will open on 12 February 2018 and close on March 9. The community preselection will be held on April 14.
For more information visit www.sheppartonvotes.com
Candidate nominations open
Candidate nominations close
Shepparton community preselection
Tuesday 14 November 2017
Daniel Andrews’ desperate bid to plug the hole in Victoria’s power supply couldn’t come at a worse time for Victorian farmers.
The Andrews Labor Government’s failure to stop the closure of Hazelwood Power Station or make up the loss of power supply means Victoria will need expensive diesel generators to keep the lights on in summer.
Today in Parliament, Energy Minister Lily D’Ambrosio refused to answer questions on the impact the diesel generators would have on diesel prices, leading up to a busy grain harvest.
Victorian grain farmers will be paying the price for Daniel Andrews’ incompetence.
When an additional 500,000 litres of diesel a day is needed to keeping the lights and air-conditioning on, it will mean huge pressure on diesel prices at a time when our grain farmers need it most.
Friday 10 November 2017
The Andrews Labor Government’s late announcement today of a price for electronic identification (eID) tags for sheep and goats next year is long overdue.
Jaala Pulford promised to give primary producers certainty ‘in the first half’ of 2017, only to force them to wait until nearly Christmas.
Today’s announcement fails to recognise serious concerns saleyard operators and the Australian Livestock and Property Agents Association (ALPA) have with Labor’s slow progress on developing the software and physical infrastructure needed to read and upload data to the National Livestock Identification System (NLIS).
The Agriculture Minister must stop ignoring saleyard operators’ concerns and grant them a 12 month extension past the March 2018 deadline to rollout eID.
Jaala Pulford is burying her head in the sand and assuming eID will implement itself, but it’s clear that’s not the case.
Victoria’s biosecurity is too important for a half-baked Labor rush job.
Wednesday 1 November 2017
The Andrews Labor Government has cut funding for Australian sign language (AUSLAN) courses.
From January 1 next year, Melbourne Polytechnic, as the sole provider of accredited AUSLAN qualifications in Victoria, will no longer be subsidised by the Victorian Government to deliver a Certificate II, III and IV or Diploma in Auslan.
The decision to cut funding for Auslan was revealed in changes to the Andrews Government’s 2018 funded course list.
The course was first accredited in 2011 by the Victorian Registrations and Qualifications Authority (VRQA) to enable the acquisition of skills by members of the deaf community.
In 2012 as Labor’s spokesperson for Skills and Training, Steve Herbert stated: “Clearly there’s a need for this training, and the government should simply fund at TAFE to provide it from the start of next year”.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Training, Skills and Apprenticeships Steph Ryan
Victoria’s deaf community deserve better than Daniel Andrews’ callous funding cuts.
From the start of next year, Victorians will have to pay more than $5000 to gain these important skills.
Daniel Andrews should immediately reinstate this qualification to ensure it can continue to be delivered as an accredited qualification next year.
Wednesday 18 October 2017
Young people encouraged to apply for Labor’s Youth Congress are still waiting to hear if their applications were successful, four months after the Congress was due to begin.
Asked about the delay in Parliament on Tuesday, Youth Affairs Minister Jenny Mikakos blamed Australia Post, despite applicants confirming that all correspondence with them to date has been via phone and email.
Ms Mikakos said the letters were signed, but ‘must still be making their way through Australia Post’s unreliable and slow service’.
Shadow Minister for Young Victorians Steph Ryan said the bizarre claim didn’t explain the four-month delay.
“The Andrews Government touted the Youth Congress as a flagship project designed so young people could get a genuine say in the development of policy, yet four months after it was due to begin people don’t even know if their applications have been accepted or rejected,” Ms Ryan said.
“Jenny Mikakos is so distracted by the crisis in the youth justice system that she has little time for young Victorians who want to make a positive contribution to our state.
“I have spoken with three young people from different parts of Victoria who applied to be on Youth Congress and not one has been advised on the outcome of their application.
“When they were interviewed in June they were told they would be contacted in the next four weeks, advising them of the outcome.
“These applications have been gathering dust on the Minister’s desk for months, awaiting her signature.
“Jenny Mikakos has done nothing but pay lip service to the participation of young people in shaping policy.”
When they were asked to apply, young people were required to fill out an application form which stated they would be required for a ‘12 month commitment from late June 2017 to 30 June 2018’.
Monday 25 September 2017
Country Victoria is at the heart of the Liberal Nationals plan to better manage our population and grow our whole state – not just Melbourne.
The Liberal Nationals strongly believe a whole-of-government approach is integral to delivering the best outcome for rural and regional Victoria and our new Shadow Minister for Decentralisation portfolio is key to delivering for those communities
As Shadow Minister for Decentralisation, I will work closely with Liberal Party Leader Matthew Guy, in his role of Shadow Minister for Population, to develop a population policy for Victoria which includes maximum benefit and opportunity for regional communities.
More than 90 per cent of the people who move to our state each year move to Melbourne, but the Andrews Labor Government has no plan to manage this growth and regional Victoria is missing out as a direct result of Labor’s incompetence.
Under Labor, country roads have been left to crumble, and skyrocketing energy costs and other cost of living pressures are making it harder to do business and causing job losses across regional Victoria.
Victorians will have a clear choice at the next election. A choice between the Liberal Nationals team that is focused and united on the issues that matter like jobs, cost of living and regional connectivity, or a Labor administration preoccupied with factional fights and rorting the taxpayer.