Press Releases

Connect with
Peter Ryan

email peter ryan twitter peter ryan facebook peter ryan youtube peter ryan instagram peter ryan linked in peter ryan

Sign up for
News Updates

Stay Updated on Regional Victoria

We implemented reforms to strengthen coal seam gas regulation and engaged with communities to determine its future.

Press Releases

Regional Growth Fund honours Vietnam Veterans

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • Deputy Premier inspects progress of Vietnam Veterans Commemorative Walk 
  • $1 billion Regional Growth Fund provided $243,000 for stage three of the project 
  • Victorian Coalition Government building a better Victoria

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan yesterday inspected progress of the Vietnam Veterans Commemorative Walk in Seymour.

Mr Ryan said the Victorian Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund had invested $243,000 in the third and final stage of the project, which was nearing completion.

“The memorial, once completed, will be a poignant reminder of the sacrifice many Australians made in Vietnam,” Mr Ryan said.

“We also expect the walk to draw tourists into the Seymour region, creating vital jobs locally.”

Nationals candidate for Euroa Steph Ryan said the project created an important monument that would honour the more than 60,000 Australians who served in Vietnam.

“Of those 60,000 who served, 3000 were wounded, 521 lost their lives and those who did return often received a hostile reception due to the controversial nature of the Vietnam War,” Ms Ryan said.

“The Vietnam Veterans Commemorative Walk will be an important monument and a place for quiet reflection on the sacrifice made by Australia’s Vietnam servicemen and women.

“The stage three works include the installation of military artefacts and lighting, wall panels to honour recipients of the Victoria Cross, the construction of two car parks, extra landscaping, paving, footpaths and drainage.”

Member for Seymour Cindy McLeish said the overall project would be completed at a cost in excess of $2.5 million and with significant in-kind input from the Mitchell Shire Council and the local community.

“Stages one and two of the project have been completed at a cost of $1.7 million and include the construction of the Luscombe Bowl and Memorial Cairn (stage one) and construction of the Commemorative Wall (stage two),” Ms McLeish said.

“This project is wonderful example of the Coalition Government’s Regional Growth Fund working with local government and community organisations to deliver local projects nominated by the community, not dreamed up by some politician in Melbourne.

“I thank and congratulate our stage three project partners, including Mitchell Shire Council for providing $100,000, in-kind support, Mitchell Sub Branch of the Vietnam Veterans Association of Australia for contributing $81,000 and the Commonwealth Government for providing $500,000.”

Mr Ryan said the Regional Growth Fund was investing in community-led projects to strategically drive jobs, investment and innovation in rural and regional Victoria.

“Since it was established in 2011, the Regional Growth Fund has delivered more than $400 million, generating around $1.6 billion in total investment across more than 1,440 projects,” Mr Ryan said.

During his visit to Seymour Mr Ryan also met with local businesses, toured the Visitor Information Centre and met with the Seymour Football Netball Club.

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122

$1 billion Regional Growth Fund transforms Nyora Community Hall

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • Deputy Premier announces $255,000 funding for Nyora Hall upgrades
  • Projects will deliver flexible, functional and appealing community meeting place
  • Victorian Coalition Government’s Regional Growth Fund is putting locals first

Everybody will be Kung Fu fighting in Nyora following Friday’s announcement by the Victorian Coalition Government that it will support a major redevelopment of the Nyora Community Hall.

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan was in Nyora on Friday to announce the Coalition Government would invest $255,000 from the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund to support a $340,000 redevelopment of the much-loved community hall.

Mr Ryan said the hall would be transformed into a flexible, functional and appealing meeting place that the Nyora community could be proud of.

The redevelopment will include the replacement of roofing and gutters, the treatment of external walls to eliminate rising damp, the installation of bi-fold walls, internal upgrades, paintwork and a redesigned entry.

The project will also include new car parking, landscaping and drainage improvements.

“The redevelopment of the Nyora Community Hall was identified as a key priority by the local community and we have listened to their concerns and invested $255,000 to ensure this project goes ahead,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Nyora Community Hall is the only community meeting space in Nyora and is a popular location for weddings, birthday celebrations and other community gatherings.

“It is also used for a wide-range of community activities, including playgroups, patchwork groups, Kung Fu classes, the community newsletter office, outreach programs, the local Lions club, as well as hosting the Council immunisation program.

“Nyora residents and user-groups will benefit from having a reliable, flexible and usable space at their disposal.”

Mr Ryan said the redevelopment would be finished by June next year.

Member for Eastern Victoria Region Danny O’Brien, who joined Mr Ryan at Friday’s announcement, said the redevelopment would ensure the Nyora Community Hall continues to meet the needs of the community as Nyora’s population grows.

“Nyora’s population is projected to grow from 1,300 today to more than 2,100 by 2030,” Mr O’Brien said.

“We need to build the infrastructure that can support a growing population and that is why we have invested more than $250,000 to enable this significant redevelopment of the Nyora Community Hall to be undertaken.”

Mr O’Brien said the project was another example of the Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund putting locals first.

“Right across Gippsland, the Regional Growth Fund is investing in vital local projects that would otherwise have struggled to secure funding,” Mr O’Brien said.

“In the South Gippsland Shire alone, the Regional Growth Fund has invested more than $13 million to support more than 30 projects, leveraging around $60 million in total investment.”

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 547 731

Coalition delivers new $7.5 million learning centre for students at Mirboo North

Friday, June 06, 2014
  • $7.5 million investment delivers flexible learning centre for Mirboo North Secondary College students
  • Project provides new art, science, IT, food tech and classroom areas
  • Victorian Coalition Government is building a better education system

The Victorian Liberal Nationals Coalition Government has delivered on its election commitment to rebuild the Mirboo North Secondary College, with the $7.5 million redevelopment now complete.

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan was in Mirboo North on Friday to officially open the new school which provides students with a modern and flexible learning space.

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government had invested $7.5 million in the 2012/13 State Budget to enable the school to complete the long-awaited redevelopment.

He said the investment enabled the development of a modern flexible learning centre, that replaced buildings from the 1950s, and included new classrooms for general learning, art, IT, food technology, science, LOTE, woodwork, multimedia and metalwork.

“These new facilities ensure Mirboo North Secondary College can continue to deliver a high-quality curriculum and learning opportunities for its 350 students both now and into the future,” Mr Ryan said.

“A key feature of this new centre is the ability for classrooms to be opened up in a number of ways to create lecture rooms, small study spaces and meeting areas to best suit the activity taking place.”

Mr Ryan said Mirboo North Secondary College had an excellent reputation for high academic achievement in VCE and this redevelopment would ensure that continues.

“This investment means that students wanting to go on to university will have the learning facilities they need to achieve their required ATAR score,” Mr Ryan said.

“It also means that for students wanting to pursue a trade, such as carpentry or metalwork, those wanting to prepare for a career in hospitality, on farm, or in the arts, that they will have the facilities they need to best prepare for the career that awaits them.

“As the Leader of The Nationals and as the local Member of Parliament, I am proud to be here today to open this wonderful facility.”

Mirboo North Secondary College Principal Karen Lanyon said the school community was thrilled with the new facilities.

“When we began designing the project, we wanted to create a high quality flexible learning space that met the needs of the whole school community and this centre has definitely met the brief,” Ms Lanyon said.

“An important part of that brief was to ensure that rural students had facilities that were equal to if not better than their city counterparts, and that is what this space offers.”

Ms Lanyon said the new centre had allowed staff to better connect teaching programs with hands on projects.

“The new food technology area is at the standard it can be certified as a café, which allows students to get the feel of an actual restaurant, while the VCAL students are currently building a market garden to grow produce that will be used in the food tech area,” Ms Lanyon said.

“Students undertaking the VCAL program will also learn about and then build a pizza oven to complement their learning.”

Media contact: Steph Nicholls 0437 108 870

Regional Growth Fund makes McIndoe Park safer

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • McIndoe Park is now safer and more accessible for families and children
  • $120,000 upgrade includes new rotunda, free BBQs, perimeter fencing and improved disabled access
  • Victorian Coalition Government invested $88,000 to make the project a reality

Leongatha’s much-loved McIndoe Park is now safer and more accessible for families and children of all ages and abilities thanks to an $88,000 investment from the Victorian Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan was in Leongatha on Friday to officially open the $120,000 McIndoe Park Development Project.

Mr Ryan, who was joined by Member for Eastern Victoria Region Danny O’Brien at Friday's event, said the project included new perimeter fencing and child proof gates, new pathways to improve disabled access, as well as a new rotunda with free barbecues, tables and chairs.

“McIndoe Park is one of the most used and loved community spaces in Leongatha, regularly hosting large community events such as concerts and Australia Day celebrations,” Mr Ryan said.

“Its accessible playground and open space make it a popular place to play for children of all ages and abilities, while its beautiful surrounds and picnic facilities mean it’s a perfect location to host gatherings with family and friends or simply for an afternoon out.”

Mr Ryan said that while the park was a popular destination for locals and visitors to Leongatha, it wasn’t always safe.

“There are two busy roads bordering the park and an accessible water drain nearby which has caused significant concern for parents of young children,” Mr Ryan said.

“Having secure fencing around the perimeter of the park will mean children are protected from the road and water drain, providing much relief for parents.”

Mr O’Brien said the installation of new pathways linking the rotundas to the playground had greatly improved accessibility at McIndoe Park, particularly for students from the South Gippsland Specialist School.

“The South Gippsland Specialist School spends a lot of time at McIndoe Park thanks to its impressive range of accessible playground equipment,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The development of these new pathways will make it easier and safer for students to access the accessible play equipment, enabling them to get the most out of this wonderful facility.”

Mr Ryan thanked the South Gippsland Shire Council, which contributed $22,000 towards the project, and the Lions Club of Leongatha, which contributed $10,000.

He said this project was another example of the Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund putting locals first.

“Without a specific fund designed to support initiatives such as the McIndoe Park development, this important upgrade may have never been completed,” Mr Ryan said.

“The community asked for this development, local parents and the council drove it and the Coalition Government is proud to provide the funding to make it a reality.”

Mr Ryan said this project was one of more than 30 across South Gippsland to receive Regional Growth Fund support, delivering almost $60 million of leveraged investment to the region.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer  0437 547 731 

$16,600 gets Mirboo North netball back on court

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • New netball court surface for Mirboo North Tigers
  • Funding of $16,600 from Victorian Coalition Government is part of $25,000 project
  • Part of $957,000 investment to get Victorians more active
Mirboo North’s growing sporting community will soon have a new netball court surface on which to practice and host big games following today’s news of a $16,600 investment by the Victorian Coalition Government to ensure the resurfacing of the match netball court at Walter Tuck Reserve.

Minister for Sport and Recreation, Damian Drum today attended the home of the Mirboo North Tigers Football Netball Club to announce the funding under the Country Football Netball Program.

“The Napthine Government is committed to building a more active Victoria, that’s why investments like these are so important,” Mr Drum said.

“The new court surface will be a welcome boost for local clubs like the Tigers and their netball teams which have until now being making do with an ageing an uneven surface.”

Mr Drum said the $16,600 funding boost will enable the replacement of the current surface with a new asphalt surface that will prevent water pooling and will be capable of hosting training and competition.

“Our investment in this project is part of our plan to build more sustainable local infrastructure to cater for growth and encourage even more people to play sport,” Mr Drum said.

Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said the project had strong community support, with the South Gippsland Shire Council and the Mirboo North community committing $4,160 and $4,240 respectively.

“The Mirboo North Tigers field teams in each of the six divisions in the Mid Gippsland Netball Association and last year won premierships in B Grade and the Under 17s, demonstrating the town’s strong passion for netball,” Mr Ryan said.

“This investment from the Coalition Government will deliver a new match court surface to ensure that local netballers of all ages can continue to enjoy their sport in a safe environment.”

Mr Ryan said this project was one of the 12 projects from across Victoria that benefitted from a share in over $957,000 from the latest round of the Coalition Government’s $10 million Country Football Netball Program.

“The program is part of the Coalition Government’s commitment to build a better Victoria by investing in quality sporting infrastructure in regional communities,” Mr Ryan said.

Coalition Government reduces fire levy rates

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • Victorian Coalition Government cutting fire levy rates from 1 July 2014
  • More funding for CFA and MFB in the 2014-15 State Budget
  • Fire services better resourced under the Coalition Government than Labor
The Victorian Coalition Government will reduce the Fire Services Property Levy rates in 2014-15 for all property owners, Treasurer Michael O’Brien and Deputy Premier Peter Ryan announced today.

"The Coalition Government’s successful implementation of the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission property-based levy has proven to be a fairer way to fund our fire services,” Mr O’Brien said.

“We are reducing the levy rates from 1 July 2014 while also increasing funding to our fire services. The Coalition Government is delivering better funding for our fire services with lower average costs for households and businesses.”

The variable levy rate will be lower across all property categories than the 2013-14 rates. A fixed charge of $102 for residential properties and $205 for all other properties will apply.

From 1 July, the average household’s contribution to fire services funding in a CFA area is expected to remain at $142, with average MFB area household contributions remaining at an average of $143. This represents a reduction in real terms for the average household.

A $50 concession for eligible pensioners and veterans will continue to apply, benefitting over 400,000 households across the state, easing cost of living pressures.

The fire services property levy funds services provided by the CFA and the MFB twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week including personnel, training, infrastructure and equipment.

“This tax reform provides greater funding for our fire services while also reducing the rates on households, businesses and farmers right across Victoria,” Mr O’Brien said.

The new rates also reflect the recategorisation from 1 July 2014 of residential-investment flats from the commercial to the residential rate, delivering further savings for tenants and property owners across Victoria.

Deputy Premier Peter Ryan said that the Coalition Government had promised to overhaul the fire services levy and had delivered.

“Last year we brought in the lowest levy rates for regional areas we could afford. This year, we’ve lowered them again,” Mr Ryan said.

“The average business in the CFA area will now pay $823 instead of $923 a year.

“The average business in a CFA area on an industrial block will see its bill drop from $1,689 to $1,389, saving $300.

“Farmers are big winners, with their average Fire Services Property Levy dropping from $449 to $402. This is a massive drop from the average of $725 each farmer was paying back in 2011-12.”

Mr O’Brien said that for more than a decade Labor refused to reform the insurance-based fire services levy. This refusal continued despite recommendations from the Bushfires Royal Commission that it should be abolished.

“It costs over $780 million a year to fund our vital fire services. Record funding of $326 million for the MFB in this year’s budget will include the replacement of all respiratory protection equipment,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The 2014-15 Budget also provides an investment of $29 million for the CFA to support an accelerated fleet replacement program.”

The Coalition Government continues to directly fund 12.5 per cent of MFB and 22.5 per cent of CFA operating budgets.

“Since coming to office in 2010, the Coalition Government has provided the CFA with more than $2.29 billion and the MFB more than $1.45 billion,” Mr O’Brien said.

The 2014-15 Budget for the CFA is $457 million, $58 million more than under the last Labor Budget. The 2014-15 Budget for MFB is $326 million, $39 million more than under the last Labor Budget.

For more information about the property-based levy visit

Media Contact: Les White 0409 805 122 

Victorian Coalition Government delivers natural gas to Warburton

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • $7.88 million from Regional Growth Fund brings natural gas to Warburton 
  • Reticulated gas to cost one-third the price of bottled gas 
  • Victorian Coalition Government reducing cost of living for regional Victorians

The Victorian Coalition Government has reached an agreement with Multinet Gas to supply natural gas to Warburton with $7.88 million in support from the Victorian Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

Speaking at Warburton, Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan said the long-awaited arrival of natural gas to Warburton would reduce the cost of gas for residents and businesses.

“Natural gas is around one third the price of bottled gas, and this means that households will now be able to save on their energy bills,” Mr Ryan said.

“Towns like Warburton have been caught in a bind where they are told they do not have enough residents to justify an energy company building infrastructure to supply them, but are handicapped in attracting new residents because they do not have reticulated natural gas.

“The Coalition Government has fixed this problem for Warburton. We promised and we delivered.”

Local State Government Member Cindy McLeish said bringing cheap energy to the town meant Warburton had more opportunity to grow and attract new businesses and residents.

“Lower energy costs makes life easier for local businesses and the local economy,” Ms McLeish said.

“The important thing today is that we have delivered for Warburton, for local businesses and residents.

“Let’s not forget that Labor openly said during the 2010 election that it would not connect any more towns to natural gas, so it was only the Coalition Government that would ever deliver this for Warburton.”

Member for Gembrook Brad Battin said Multinet expected to begin construction next year, with gas to start flowing in the second half of 2017.

“Regardless of which party wins the election this year, Warburton will receive cheaper, natural gas courtesy of the Coalition Government,” Mr Battin said.

“Some 5,600m of supply main and a minimum of 23,300m of reticulation main will be laid, supplying natural gas to at least 500 homes and businesses in Warburton.

“It’s a great day for the town.”

Mr Ryan said the $7.88 million in funding was provided through the Regional Growth Fund’s Energy for the Regions program, which provides $100 million over a four year period to deliver natural gas to towns in regional and rural Victoria.

“Energy for the Regions helps to create new investment in regional Victoria, ease cost-of-living pressures, help to grow jobs and businesses and build a better life for regional Victorians,” Mr Ryan said.

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122

Coalition Government building a better Gippsland

Friday, June 06, 2014

This week’s Victorian Coalition Government 2014-15 State Budget delivers in the key areas of education, roads, tourism, business, emergency services and health, Deputy Premier and The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said today.

Mr Ryan said the Coalition’s State Budget delivers improved infrastructure and services for residents and businesses throughout Gippsland to build a better, more connected Victoria.

“This Budget is investing hundreds of millions of dollars into Gippsland and other regional cities and rural communities,” Mr Ryan said.

The Liberal Nationals Coalition Government outlined significant expenditure in the 2014-15 Budget that benefits residents in the Gippsland South electorate. Highlights include:

  • $5.6 million to upgrade Korumburra Secondary College;
  • $4 million for planning and stage One works at the Sale Specialist School; 
  • $5.12 million for the Leongatha heavy vehicle alternate route;
  • $14 million for regional tourism marketing to increase visitors to regional Victoria;
  • $14 million to provide small business owners with practical financial management, marketing and human resources strategies;
  • $4.7 million to upgrade the online energy price comparison tool, My Power Planner;
  • $65 million to fund bushfire management measures;
  • $29 million for the CFA to acquire 78 additional vehicles
  • $20.5 million to replace Respiratory Protection Equipment for CFA and MFB firefighters;
  • 5.5 million for practical on-ground partnership with Landcare groups;
  • An additional $3 million a year for the Boating Safety and Facilities Program, bringing total funding to $8 million annually; and
  • $1.2 billion commitment per year to Vocational Education and Training.

Mr Ryan said these investments build upon the Coalition Government’s recently announced budget initiatives. Highlights in the Gippsland South region include: 

  • An extra $130 million pumped into road maintenance, meaning that more than $500 million will be delivered in the coming year for maintaining roads - up from $384 million under Labor;
  • $73 million for a major redevelopment of Latrobe Regional Hospital, including a new emergency department with double the capacity of the current facility, a new 30-bed ward and a cardiac catheterisation laboratory;
  • $13.5 million for the rollout of new tasers to all 24 hour police stations across regional Victoria, including Sale; 
  • $34 million to expand drug and alcohol treatment services and tackle the use of illicit drugs including ice throughout the state, including Gippsland;
  • $2 million to improve wild dog control; and
  • $3 million to provide support for regional councils to assess infrastructure demand, develop business cases and manage projects.

“By rebuilding Victoria’s finances and keeping the economy strong, the Coalition Government has been able to advance key projects, including those under the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Nationals are exceptionally proud of the Regional Growth Fund, which has contributed to more than 70 projects in the Wellington and South Gippsland shires, leveraging almost $60 million in total investment.”

Mr Ryan said the local projects announced in the 2014-15 State Budget built on the Coalition Government’s significant investment in Gippsland over past Budgets.

Mr Ryan said the Liberal Nationals Coalition Government is building a better Victoria by delivering a strong budget with a record $27 billion investment in roads, rail, health and education, ensuring growth, jobs and opportunities across the state.

“This is in stark contrast to the risk that Daniel Andrews and Labor pose to Victoria’s economy and prosperity. Victorians cannot afford a return to Labor, which is more interested in kowtowing to its union mates than addressing the needs of regional Victorians,” he said.

“Only a Liberal Nationals Coalition Government can be trusted to deliver these important projects on time and within budget.”

Media contact: Steph Nicholls 0437 108 870

Regional Growth Fund helps Bertalli’s Alpine Breads to rise higher

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • Bertalli’s Alpine Breads to develop an innovative new packaging line 
  • New packaging line will create six jobs and open up new markets 
  • Victorian Coalition Government invests $75,000 to support the expansion

Six new jobs will be created at Bertalli’s Alpine Breads Benalla bakery, with the Victorian Coalition Government announcing today that it will invest $75,000 from the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund to support a $450,000 expansion.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional and Rural Development Peter Ryan joined Member for Benalla Bill Sykes and Nationals Candidate for Euroa Steph Ryan to announce the Coalition Government grant which will enable the company to expand its packaging line.

Mr Ryan said the expansion would allow the company to boost the supply of its new range of artisan breads, opening up new markets.

“This $450,000 investment will enable Bertalli’s Alpine Breads to develop an innovative new packaging line for its artisan breads, creating six new local jobs,” Mr Ryan said.

“The new packaging line will replace traditional bread loaf packaging with new sealed clear packaging, similar to that used for cheese and meats.

“This process will extend the shelf life of its bread by up to three weeks, enabling the company to supply new interstate markets including supermarkets, retail health food businesses and specialty food outlets.

“The Coalition Government is proud to support regional and rural businesses to grow their operations, access new markets and employ more local people.”

Mr Sykes welcomed the investment and said Bertalli’s Alpine Breads was a highly regarded specialty bakery, employing 20 Benalla locals.

“Bertalli’s Alpine Breads is a regional success story, growing from a humble local bakery to one that supplies specialty breads to Coles and Woolworths,” Mr Sykes said.

“More recently, the company has developed a new range of artisan breads for supply to independent supermarkets and retail outlets.

“This expansion will allow more people in more areas to purchase this wonderful Benalla product.”

Ms Ryan said this exciting project was another example of the strong work the Nationals, as part of a Coalition Government, were delivering for regional communities.

“The Coalition Government is investing record funding in regional and rural Victoria through initiatives such as the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund,” Ms Ryan said.

“The Regional Growth Fund has so far invested more than $4 million for projects in Benalla, leveraging more than $12 million in investment.

“This includes $1 million for the $4.57 million Benalla Library/Civic Centre Conversion project, $900,000 for the $3.5 million Benalla Aquatic Centre Re-development, and $300,000 for the $400,000 Benalla Town Hall Restoration.”

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122

Deputy Premier announces $4.75 million Wangaratta High School redevelopment

Friday, June 06, 2014

  • Deputy Premier announces $4.75 million for Wangaratta High School 
  • Block A to be demolished, replaced by a modern teaching and learning space 
  • Victorian Coalition Government is delivering record education funding

The Victorian Coalition Government will fund much-needed upgrades to Wangaratta High School as part of the 2014-15 Victorian Budget, Deputy Premier Peter Ryan announced today.

Mr Ryan joined Member for Murray Valley Tim McCurdy in Wangaratta to announce that the Coalition Government would invest $4.75 million to deliver modern teaching and learning spaces, as part of stage three of the Wangaratta High School masterplan.

Mr Ryan said the project would involve demolishing Block A’s dilapidated classrooms and administration facilities, replacing it with modern classrooms and open spaces.

“Block A was described as substandard, worn and of poor quality in the Coalition Government’s recent maintenance audit of every school in Victoria,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Coalition Government is proud to deliver this much-needed funding to support the replacement of Block A.

“I thank local teachers, parents, students and the broader Wangaratta community who have championed this project, and I applaud their dedication to see it through to completion.

“I also pay tribute to the Member for Murray Valley Tim McCurdy who has strongly advocated for this project in the Parliament; he can take great pride in the fact this funding has now been delivered.”

Mr Ryan said the project would complement works already undertaken as part of the school’s masterplan.

“Stage one of the masterplan saw the development of new senior school facilities, with stage two delivering a new science block and administration facilities,” Mr Ryan said

“The Coalition Government’s investment will finalise the work outlined in the masterplan, providing a school that will meet the educational needs of the region’s students long into the future.”

Mr McCurdy said securing this funding marked a great day for the Wangaratta community and the school’s 950 students.

He said the school community would be provided with the opportunity to have its say in how the funds should be directed to ensure the best return for students.

“This project will have a significant and positive impact on Wangaratta High School students,” Mr McCurdy said.

“I am proud to be part of a Coalition Government that is investing in local schools and building a brighter future for students in Wangaratta and the North East.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government was delivering better schools right across regional and rural Victoria as part of its strategy to boost education in Victoria.

“The Coalition Government has boosted funding for school maintenance and is providing a record $8.8 billion in funding for primary and secondary school education in the 2014 calendar year,” Mr Ryan said.

“Delivering modern school infrastructure is vital if we are to create a truly world-class school system here in Victoria.”

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122