With many forecasting a tough upcoming State Budget that will cut the public service significantly, Nationals Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, says Daniel Andrews must commit to retaining frontline workers in rural areas.
“What has been widely reported is that the public sector workforce, which has ballooned under this Labor Government, is going to shed 10% of all staff – what I am saying is, those cuts need to be made in the high rises of the government departments in the city, not our frontline country staff in offices that service the public,” Mr Bull said.
“Already we have office hours at Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA, formerly DELWP) cut in half in Bairnsdale and Orbost and the Housing office not being accessible to those who want to drop in.
“With the State’s net debt projected to reach $165.4 billion in June 2026 and our current state interest being paid on this debt sitting at $10 million per day and rising, decisive action must be taken, but this mismanagement should not come at our expense.
“Much of this financial disaster has developed from tens of billions in cost overruns on city-based projects, so we should not have to pay for that by having important public services cut,” said Mr Bull.
“Data last year, an election year, showed the public service grew by 17% and you have to wonder how many of these were city-based spin doctors. However, now the election is over the Premier is talking about shedding 10%.
“The Premier talks about his ‘big build’ but all he is creating for Victorians is a ‘big bill’.
“He needs to cut bureaucratic costs in the city and focus any savings on the healthcare and mental health crisis along with fixing our roads – they are all areas that will save lives.”