The Nationals new plan for Gippsland COVID recovery
Gippsland would see significant benefits from a bold, positive plan to help Victoria on the path to recovery from devastating COVID-19 shutdowns.
The Nationals Member for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien, said the new plan is focused on four critical pillars for recovery that will help Victorians to secure their family finances, rebuild local business, invest in health and education, and support our communities.
Mr O’Brien said Gippsland was desperate to get back on track after extended lockdowns and restrictions on business far in excess of the level of risk given our low case numbers through the pandemic.
“Gippsland has done the hard yards throughout the shutdowns and as case numbers remain low there’s light at the end of the tunnel for a safe pathway to COVID normal.
“I’ve been holding a series of listening posts throughout the community in recent weeks and people are keen to get our communities and local businesses up and going again.
Mr O’Brien said Gippsland would benefit under the Back to Work, Back in Business plan from initiatives such as the fast-tracking of the Princes Highway duplication to Sale, the reintroduction of the Country Roads and Bridges Program and a $250 million fund to help businesses and government agencies and their staff to implement work from home opportunities, particularly in regional areas.
“We are outlining significant payroll tax reductions for regional businesses, a $300 million fund to restore regional tourism, the establishment of a $1 billion Bringing Manufacturing Home fund and placing a freeze on a raft of taxes and charges affecting thousands of Gippslanders.
“In addition, our plan would help families recover with a one-off increase to the energy concession, no new taxes or tax increases and provide a voucher system to help local kids get back into sport.
“This is not a plan for the next election – Victoria can’t wait that long – this is a comprehensive plan that the Victorian Government must implement now.”
Leader of The Nationals Peter Walsh said the devastation of the second wave after the Melbourne hotel quarantine debacle had ripped the soul out of regional communities.
“Country Victoria is the engine room of the state and injecting life into our small businesses, agriculture, tourism and manufacturing sectors will help set our state on the path to recovery,” Mr Walsh said.
“But each time Daniel Andrews fronts up to the media, he’s failed to announce a plan to get our country communities – where there’s little to no active cases – back on track.
“The plan The Nationals have put forward today is focused on solutions that will set us all on a safe path to COVID normal.”
2 November 2020