Home' The Great Southern Star : August 30th 2016 Contents “THE STAR” Tuesday, August 30, 2016 - PAGE 9
By Brad Lester
A GROUP of councillors has failed in its
bid to advocate against what it sees as
the inequitable distribution of services
and facilities across South Gippsland
At the July meeting, councillors Andrew McEwen,
Jeannette Harding, Don Hill and Kieran Kennedy called
for a report for the new council about a new Small Town
Discretionary Capex Community Budgeting Program,
saying smaller towns were missing out on new capital
Last Wednesday, Cr McEwen tabled a notice of mo-
tion calling for council’s future annual reports to report
back to the community about the cumulative effects of
new capital works expenditure.
This would be done by annual reports from 2016-17
onwards including details of new capital works from
the preceding 10 years and the next 15 years, including
details of funding sources and localities.
“What gets measured gets done,” Cr McEwen said.
“There are gross inequalities in the way spending
has being done in the last 10 years in the shire between
the smaller and bigger towns.”
Cr Jim Fawcett rejected the premise of equity on
which the motion was based.
“People who live of towns use town facilities,” he
Councillors Kennedy and Harding supported the
motion, but not councillors Davies or Brunt.
“It’s a little bit of electioneering,” Cr Brunt said,
saying the motion gave the impression ratepayers were
“all badly off out there”.
“Every town has a different purpose. This causes a
bit of angst. We have done a lot of good things.”
Cr Hill said the motion was about council being ac-
The motion was lost five votes to four. For: council-
lors McEwen, Hill, Harding and Kennedy, and against,
mayor Cr Bob Newton and councillors Fawcett, Brunt,
Davies and Nigel Hutchinson-Brooks.
BASS Coast Shire Council’s much an-
ticipated draft business case for the
Wonthaggi Union Community Arts Cen-
tre (WUCAC) is now available.
Identified as a key action within council’s arts
and culture plan 2015-2019, the draft business case
provides recommendations for the potential manage-
ment, programming and infrastructural needs of the
“The workshops we did last year and the continu-
ing conversations since resounded the obvious impor-
tance that the arts, in its myriad disciplines, has in our
shire,” Bass Coast mayor Cr Jordan Crugnale said.
Cr Crugnale said the spirit of the history of the arts
centre remained and council wanted to build on it.
“The business case is about bringing it into the
diversity of programming today, catering for both
residents and visitors and all the creative preferences
in between, finding the best and appropriate model to
get us there with the capital investment needed,” Cr
“The vision is for it to become our premier arts
centre, be on the Gippsland circuit and be the pulsat-
ing creative heart that our regional centre deserves
that can then spark the activation of the smaller halls,
and the traditional and non-traditional spaces we have
around the shire.”
The draft business case, a summary page and an
online feedback form are all available on council’s
website at www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/wucac
An information session is planned for Wednesday,
August 31, at the arts centre.
Another opportunity for questions and answers is
available via council’s Facebook page on Thursday,
The feedback period for the draft business case
closes on Monday, September 19, at 5pm.
Shape arts centre
Electioneering claim clouds
bid for funding equity
GIPPSLAND South MLA Danny
O’Brien has called on the State Govern-
ment to investigate a newly rebuilt sec-
tion of the South Gippsland Highway
that has been the subject of numerous
complaints by motorists.
The Ruby straight on the highway between
Leongatha and Korumburra is being referred to
as “the rollercoaster” by some motorists follow-
ing the completion of recent works.
Mr O’Brien raised the matter with Roads
Minister Luke Donnellan in Parliament recently,
asking him to investigate if the new work was up
to national standards.
“I have been contacted by numerous motorists
about the condition of this new section of road
and it is a topic of conversation as I travel around
that part of my electorate,” he said.
“The road is not smooth, the pavement is very
rough and, in some cases, it is extremely bumpy.
“Given it is brand new work that has just been
completed, it is of great concern to my commu-
nity this road section is so poor.
“I have received numerous complaints as I
travel around about the quality of the job that has
been completed and I ask the minister to investi-
gate whether these works meet the quality speci-
fications that guide VicRoads.”
Mr O’Brien said it was just 12 months ago the
minister visited the exact location to spruik La-
bor’s roads maintenance spending.
“During the visit, the Roads Minister claimed
these works would reduce the level of road dete-
rioration and assist producers to get their prod-
ucts to the market and help locals as they travel to
work and school, however they are very unsatis-
fied with the finished product,” he said.
“This section is a very busy part of the South
Gippsland Highway and is used by a lot of people
in both towns to access education, healthcare and
“A spokesperson for the Minister for Roads
and Road Safety Luke Donnellan said, “We are
aware of the concerns surrounding the South
Gippsland Highway. We are working with
VicRoads to ensure the highway is repaired as
soon as possible.”
Drivers disappointed: Gippsland South MLA Danny O’Brien wants the State Government
to investigate the bumpy state of the South Gippsland Highway at Ruby.
Ruby rollercoaster deplorable, says MP
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