Labor fails to commit to local CFA station upgrades
The Melbourne Labor Government has again dodged questions about upgrades to local fire stations, failing to commit to a timeline or budget funding for badly needed works.
The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Danny O’Brien again raised in Parliament the need for upgrades of Mirboo North, Foster and Yarram fire stations.
Mr O’Brien said all three stations were heading towards being unusable with respect to inadequate room for volunteers to get changed for a fire and room to house the trucks.
“Ensuring our volunteer fire fighters are supported and have a safe place to work from while protecting our communities is vital,” Mr O’Brien said.
Mr O’Brien had previously written to the Minister for Emergency Services Jane Garrett seeking funding to upgrade Mirboo North and Foster bridges and raised in Parliament the need for Yarram’s station to be upgraded.
“The response that I have now received from the Minister gave no indication that Melbourne Labor is going to make any funding available to undertake these important capital upgrades.
“The Minister’s answer says that Melbourne Labor is committed to providing a safe environment for fire fighters, yet fails to allocate money for this to occur,” Mr O’Brien said.
“This is in stark contrast to the former Coalition Government’s commitment which built new fire stations throughout the electorate including those at Rosedale, Wurruk, Kongwak, Poowong, Koonwarra and Carrajung.”
Mr O’Brien said the Melbourne Labor Government seemed happy to try to appease the United Firefighters Union, but was less inclined to support our volunteers.
“I’ve spoken to the excellent volunteers at Mirboo North, Yarram and Foster, as well as many other stations around the electorate, and I know how hard they work and the hours they put in to protect our communities,” Mr O’Brien said.
“It’s not unreasonable of them to want modernised fire stations which at the very least are capable of adequately housing their fire trucks, which at the moment is barely the case.
“Melbourne Labor needs to put its money where its mouth is and show that it recognises the vital role CFA volunteers play in regional communities and fund these upgrades.”