ON JUNE 14, the Liberal candidate for McMillan, Russell Broadbent, announced that he’d secured a promise of $4.8 million from the Liberal hierarchy for the Port Welshpool Long Jetty Rehabilitation Project.
At the time, Labor candidate Chris Buckingham was magnanimous in praising opponents, now he’s gone a step further in getting Labor to match the promise.
The result is that the project will now go ahead regardless of the election result this Saturday and the locals are delighted.
Paul Macphail of Welshpool said the news was a great fillip for the area.
“As a former tourism executive, Chris knows how important this is for us,” he said.
“It can be a pretty quiet place down here but having a tourist attraction like this really links us into the movement of visitors through the area.”
Mayor of South Gippsland Shire, Cr Bob Newton was equally delighted.
“We’ve backed the local community on this for a long time by having it at the top of our priority list. We had some disappointment in the past but seeing both sides commit to it is great,” Cr Newton said.
“It’s an absolute icon of the area that needed to be preserved.”
Labor candidate for McMillan, Chris Buckingham said the Long Jetty is an important piece of heritage for the whole Gippsland region.
“I know how important this announcement will be to people across the region,” he said this week
“The local community has been fighting for the restoration of the Long Jetty, and I’m excited that a Shorten Labor Government will provide $4.8 million towards the restoration.
“For many years Long Jetty has been slowly deteriorating, and is now a symbol of the neglect shown by the Abbott-Turnbull Government for South Gippsland.
“That will change with a Shorten Labor Government. We are delivering on the long overdue commitment and guaranteeing that the Long Jetty will be restored.
Federal funding of $4.8 million is needed to match the $5 million already committed by the State Government through its ‘Putting Locals First Program’ and the $1 million allocated by the local shire.