Press Releases

Local artist shortlisted for 2012 Victorian Indigenous Art Awards

* * - Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan today congratulated Gippsland’s Jason King on being one of twenty artists shortlisted for prizes totalling more than $50,000 as part of the Victorian Government’s 2012 Victorian Indigenous Art Awards.

Announced recently by Premier and Minister for the Arts Ted Baillieu, the Victorian Indigenous Art Awards play an important role in celebrating and promoting the work of the State’s Indigenous artists and our unique Koorie culture.

Twenty-seven works were selected from 132 entries for this year’s awards, with local artist Jason King shortlisted as a finalist for his work Agrotis Infusia.

“Jason, who is currently based in Sale, was born and bred in East Gippsland and currently holds the position of Chief Executive Officer at the Gippsland and East Gippsland Aboriginal Cooperative,” Mr Ryan said.

“Jason sees his art as a way to connect to his culture and reflect on his surroundings.

“Jason’s piece, Agrotis Infusia, represents the symbol on the wing of a Bogong moth. His grandmother’s ancestry is Ngarigo (Monaro) peoples of the Monaro High Plans. His ancestors feasted on the Bogong Moth every year as a part of celebrations and coming together of many tribal groups of the Alpine regions of Southern New South Wales.”

Mr Baillieu said the shortlisted artists worked across a variety of mediums, from traditional painting and weaving techniques to photography, sculpture, video and street art.

“There are many voices and many generations of Indigenous artists in Victoria working to uphold traditions and to express their culture in new and distinct ways,” Mr Baillieu said.

The awards, which give prizes across five categories, are open to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists living in Victoria.

This year’s finalists include both regional and metropolitan artists, past winners and several who have not been shortlisted before.

The finalists were selected by an expert judging panel comprising Dr Treahna Hamm, an Aboriginal artist; Clinton Nain, a Torres Strait Islander artist; and Jason Smith, Director of Heide Museum of Art.

The winners of the 2012 Victorian Indigenous Art Awards will be announced on 9 March 2012 and the finalist exhibition will be open to the public from 10 to 31 March 2012 at the awards partner gallery, fortyfivedownstairs at 45 Flinders Lane, Melbourne.

Details of the award categories are attached and for more information visit the Victorian Indigenous Art Awards blog: www.indigenousartawards.com.au

2012 VICTORIAN INDIGENOUS ART AWARDS – CATEGORIES

Deadly Art Award – $25,000 (plus a Highly Commended award to the value of $5,000). Supported by Arts Victoria.

Koorie Heritage Trust Acquisition Award – $5,000. Sponsored by Koorie Heritage Trust.

CAL Victorian Indigenous Art Award for Three Dimensional Works – $5,000 (plus a Highly Commended award to the value of $1,500). Sponsored by Copyright Agency Limited, Cultural Fund.

CAL Victorian Indigenous Art Award for Works on Paper – $5,000 (plus a Highly Commended award to the value of $1,500). Sponsored by Copyright Agency Limited, Cultural Fund.

Arts Victoria People’s Choice Award – $2,500: Awarded to the artist who receives the highest number of votes from the public, via the Arts Victoria website (voting opens on Friday 9 March 2012) - Supported by Arts Victoria.

Media: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

Victoria making inroads in law and order

* * - Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Victorian Coalition Government is already achieving results at the national level as part of its commitment to make Victoria safer by recruiting a record number of police,  Deputy Premier and Minister for Police and Emergency Services Peter Ryan said today.

“The Productivity Commission’s Report on Government Services 2011 shows that Victoria no longer has the lowest number of frontline police per person than any other state in Australia,” Mr Ryan said.

“Victoria is not bottom of table for the first time in at least six years but it will take time to turn around 11 years of neglect by the former Labor Government which saw Victoria to be the worst state in Australia for police numbers and police resources per person.

“The Coalition Government is pleased to see the tide is turning after we allocated $602 million last year to fund 1,700 additional frontline police by November 2014.

“Victoria Police will have allocated an extra 850 frontline police by June 2012 which means the Coalition Government will soon be halfway in delivering on our election commitment.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government’s successful police Enterprise Bargaining Agreement would also directly contribute to improved community safety, better operational policing outcomes and significant efficiencies in the force. 

“Law and order continues to be a top priority of this government as we work closely with Victoria Police to reverse Labor’s soft-on-crime approach,” Mr Ryan said. 

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government’s commitment to recruit and train 940 Victoria Police Protective Services Officers (PSOs) by November 2014 at a cost of $212 million would help address perceptions of safety on public transport at night, which was still concerning.

“Training of 940 PSOs has begun with the first round of recruits to be deployed at railway stations from 6pm until last train from next month to help reduce crime, violence and anti-social behavior in and around train stations,” Mr Ryan said.

Media contact:          Sonia Heath 0413 485 526 

$1000 sports uniform grants now available

* * - Monday, January 30, 2012

Community-based clubs and organisations across Gippsland can apply for funding to purchase new sports uniforms under the Victorian Coalition Government’s Sporting Uniform Grants Program, Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said today.

Mr Ryan said clubs had until 1 March 2012 to apply for grants worth up to $1000.

“The grants can be used to purchase various essential items including football boots, jumpers, tracksuits, leotards, runners, hats or bathers,” Mr Ryan said.

“The program contributes to the Victorian Government’s sport and recreation policy priorities of increasing participation and supporting grass roots sport and recreation clubs to create physically active communities and to nurture talent.

“Club sport plays a big part in the life of many Gippsland communities and team uniforms are more than just colours, they represent local sporting traditions and community pride.

“Being part of a team provides a socially valued role for participants and creates a sense of community membership.”

Mr Ryan said funding preference would be given to projects that:

· increase participation in communities with existing low levels of participation in sport and physical activity;

· provide uniforms or equipment for competitors and active participants (including umpires) rather than for non-playing officials; and

· include a quote providing details of the type, number and cost of uniforms to be purchased.

Minister for Sport and Recreation Hugh Delahunty said new uniforms can go a long way toward boosting team morale and connecting communities.

“The grants also help attract and accommodate new members, nurture talent and overcome financial barriers to being more active, more often,” Mr Delahunty said.

Guidelines and application forms can be accessed online at www.grants.dpcd.vic.gov.au or by phoning the grants information line on 1300 366 356.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

Community safety improvements for Sale Turf Club

* * - Friday, January 27, 2012
Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan today announced that the Victorian Coalition Government would contribute half of the $16,970 cost to improve and increase the height of perimeter fencing at Sale’s Greenwattle Racecourse.

“The Sale Turf Club is an important part of Victoria’s country racing industry and the increase in fence height will improve safety for horses, patrons and vehicles in the area,” Mr Ryan said.

“The racing industry maintains top safety standards and the project will reduce the potential for accidents resulting from a horse jumping the ground’s perimeter fence near the Sale - Maffra Road.

“The existing perimeter fence, from the turn out of the straight to the 1700 metre mark, will be made safer with 1.8 metre high wire mesh fencing reducing any possibility of horse escapes.”

Minister for Racing Denis Napthine said the new fencing would be a great improvement to community safety and had the full support of the Victorian Government, Racing Victoria Limited, Country Racing Victoria and the Sale Turf Club.

“The Victorian Government will contribute $8,485 toward this project with the Sale Turf Club to fund the remainder of the cost,” Dr Napthine said.

“The Coalition Government is a strong supporter of country racing and is committed to further investment in our grassroots racetracks through our $79.5 million VRIF.”

Chairman of the Sale Turf Club David Wilson thanked the Government for its contribution to racing and community safety.

“We are delighted to receive a contribution from the Victorian Government for the replacement of part of the club perimeter fencing,” Mr Wilson said.

“It is paramount the club provide a safe environment for spectators, participants and horses; I therefore commend the Victorian Government for their support of this project.”

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

Coalition Government gets tough on weed control

* * - Wednesday, January 25, 2012
Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said the Victorian Coalition Government was delivering on its commitment to target recalcitrant land owners who fail to control invasive plants on private property.

“The problem of weed control has been raised over many years by Landcare groups throughout Victoria,” Mr Ryan said.

“Whilst more continually needs to be done and this is a problem that will not go away, I welcome the news that the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has more than doubled property inspections in a major crackdown on agricultural pests like blackberry, gorse, ragwort and thistles.”

Minister for Agriculture, Peter Walsh said the government allocated an additional $21.2 million in the State Budget to boost the fight against weeds and pests and this investment is paying off.

Mr Walsh said state-wide, DPI officers inspected 2,768 properties from July to December 2011 compared to just 1,290 for the same period in 2010.

“As a result of this crackdown, 12 property owners have been hit with fines and another will be prosecuted through the courts by DPI inspectors,” Mr Walsh said.

“Across the state some 633 landowners have received land management or directions notices over the period demanding they take action to clean up their properties or face penalties. This is up on 288 notices issued the previous year.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government was committed to taking action on those landholders who allow their properties to become a haven for pests and weeds.

“The former Labor Government had walked away from controlling widespread weeds such as gorse and blackberry and the fact that more than one in five properties inspected required an improvement notice is proof the state went backwards under Labor’s approach,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said DPI inspectors would target weed enforcement actions to support communities where landholders were working together to co-ordinate pest control action, for example through Landcare groups or weed taskforces.

“The department is implementing 90 weed enforcement projects across Victoria to support community-led action on weed,’ Mr Ryan said.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

Retail policy reforms to grow Victorian jobs

* * - Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Deputy Premier and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan has welcomed retail policy changes recently announced by Planning Minister Matthew Guy which will spur major jobs growth and flexibility in Victoria’s retail industry, particularly for the Gippsland region.

On Tuesday, Mr Guy announced reforms to Amendment VC88, which he said would lead to the creation of thousands of jobs by allowing the dynamic retail industry to expand to meet changing consumer needs.

“We have revised the bulky goods definition and removed floorspace restrictions, which will allow businesses to open smaller stores in areas where a large store may not be viable” Mr Guy said.

“These reforms give certainty to the retail industry about where stores may be developed.”

The changes were welcomed by leading retailers including Baby Bunting, Officeworks, Beacon Lighting, Petstock and Associated Retailers Limited. These retailers are planning to open more than 50 stores in Victoria in the coming years as a result of these reforms.

Mr Ryan welcomed the reforms and said the changes to the planning scheme would allow for the expansion of new and existing retail businesses in Victoria.

“These sensible changes will allow small businesses in the Gippsland region to grow local jobs and operate efficiently,” Mr Ryan said.

“Local businesses will benefit greatly from these progressive reforms for the retail industry.”

Mr Ryan said the former Labor Government reviewed retail policy in 2007, but failed to resolve the issue, leaving the industry in the dark and without certainty.

“The changes will allow councils to assess permit applications for bulky goods retail on their merits,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Liberal Nationals Coalition Government is creating thousands of jobs throughout Victoria with these common sense reforms.”

Mr Ryan said the retail reforms continue the Coalition Government’s continued commitment to growing Victorian employment and the economic prosperity of the state.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

$2.5 million for infrastructure projects in Wellington Shire

* * - Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Wellington Shire will receive $2.5 million for vital infrastructure works as part of the first allocation from the Victorian Coalition Government’s $100 million Local Government Infrastructure Program (LGIP).

Minister for Regional and Rural Development and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said Victoria’s 48 regional and rural councils would receive funding to support key local infrastructure priorities, including the Wellington Shire which would receive the maximum funding amount of $2.5 million.

Mr Ryan said the Wellington Shire Council had allocated its funding as a contribution towards the following projects from its Forward Capital Works Plan;

  • Rosedale Outdoor Pool upgrade, Rosedale - $300,000;
  • Yarram and District Hub, Yarram – $900,000;
  • Gippsland Art Gallery, Sale - $650,000; and
  • Sale Library, Sale - $650,000.

Wellington Shire Council Acting Chief Executive Officer Paul Holton said, “This program makes a valuable contribution towards a series of large budget projects and has enabled us to move forward our planning towards achieving these projects for our community.

“The steering committee working on the feasibility study for the Yarram and District Hub have been heartened to receive a significant portion of what is required for the project to proceed.”

Mr Ryan said the LGIP gave regional and rural councils certainty to plan for and build new infrastructure or renew assets.

“The program is supporting local council initiatives including roads, bridges, and new community assets such as halls and theatres, sporting grounds, grandstands, pools, libraries, and upgrading existing facilities,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the distribution of funds was based on a fair and equitable formula designed in consultation with the Municipal Association of Victoria, Regional Cities Victoria, Rural Councils Victoria, Regional Development Australia Committee chairs and the Victorian Grants Commission.

He said the LGIP was part of the Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

“The Coalition’s flagship $1 billion Regional Growth Fund is supporting growth, jobs and better quality of life for people living in regional and rural Victoria,” Mr Ryan said.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

$2.5 million for infrastructure projects in South Gippsland Shire

* * - Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The South Gippsland Shire will receive $2.5 million for vital infrastructure works as part of the first allocation from the Victorian Coalition Government’s $100 million Local Government Infrastructure Program (LGIP).

Minister for Regional and Rural Development and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan said Victoria’s 48 regional and rural councils would receive funding to support key local infrastructure priorities, including the South Gippsland Shire which would receive the maximum funding amount of $2.5 million.

Mr Ryan said the South Gippsland Shire Council had allocated its funding to the following projects;

  • Grand Ridge West Road footpath extension, Mirboo North - $117,892;
    · Old Waratah Road footpath extension, Fish Creek - $204,336;
    · Nerrena Road footpath extension, Nerrena - $45,664;
    · Michael Place footpath extension, Leongatha - $29,680;
    · Anderson Street footpath, Leongatha – $102,428;
    · Anderson Street, Leongatha - $555,246;
    · Stoney Creek Road, Stoney Creek - $530,000;
    · Princess Street rehabilitation, Korumburra - $212,000;
    · Hawkins Street rehabilitation, Korumburra - $194,400;
    · John Street rehabilitation, Korumburra - $42,400;
    · Bass Valley Road, Bena - $241,574;
    · Nason Street, Korumburra - $21,200; and
    · Fullers Road, Foster - $203,180.

South Gippsland Shire Council Chief Executive Officer Tim Tamlin said, “We see it as a real shot in the arm for our capital works program as this money goes directly into funding infrastructure projects including footpath extensions and road repairs and upgrades.

“It’s an additional $2.5 million in capital works that will benefit the community and which we would not have otherwise been able to spend.”

Mr Ryan said the LGIP gave regional and rural councils certainty to plan for and build new infrastructure or renew assets.

“The program is supporting local council initiatives including roads, bridges, and new community assets such as halls and theatres, sporting grounds, grandstands, pools, libraries, and upgrading existing facilities,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the distribution of funds was based on a fair and equitable formula designed in consultation with the Municipal Association of Victoria, Regional Cities Victoria, Rural Councils Victoria, Regional Development Australia Committee chairs and the Victorian Grants Commission.

He said the LGIP was part of the Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

“The Coalition’s flagship $1 billion Regional Growth Fund is supporting growth, jobs and better quality of life for people living in regional and rural Victoria,” Mr Ryan said.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

$5,000 for Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club

* * - Thursday, January 12, 2012
Minister for Emergency Services and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan today congratulated the Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club on the important work it does for the local community and said he was pleased to announce $5,000 in Government funding to support the club.

Mr Ryan said $5,000 grants had been allocated to all Victorian Life Saving Clubs, including the Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club, to assist with the costs of maintenance, reporting, training audits, information technology support and general administration.

Mr Ryan said Venus Bay was considered in the top five most dangerous beaches in Victoria, with the Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club members having provided valuable assistance to the community since the club was founded in 1961.

“The club patrols the area of Gippsland coast between Point Smythe at the mouth of Anderson’s Inlet and Arch Rock near Cape Liptrap from November until the end of Easter each season,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club and its members members help to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for swimmers and beach goers during the warmer months.”

Mr Ryan said the Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club offered a range of educational and training programs for its members and the community including the Nippers Program, Bronze Medallion and Surf Rescue Certificate.

“Over the years the training and knowledge provided by the Venus Bay Surf Life Saving Club has enabled its members to save countless lives and make Venus Bay a safer place for the community to enjoy.”

Mr Ryan said Victorian Life Saving Clubs and its members provided an invaluable service to the community and this funding would help to reduce the administrative burden on volunteers and will assist with the costs of club house maintenance and insurance.

“The Coalition Government recognises the important role that Surf Life Saving Clubs and volunteers play in protecting the lives of Victorians,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the $5,000 grant is from the Government’s $9.5 million budget package for Life Saving Victoria and will be provided to clubs annually over the next four years.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 870

$5,000 for Woodside Beach Surf Life Saving Club

* * - Thursday, January 12, 2012
Minister for Emergency Services and Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan today congratulated the Woodside Beach Surf Life Saving Club on the important work it does for the local community and said he was pleased to announce $5000 in Government funding to support the club.

Mr Ryan said $5,000 grants had been allocated to all Victorian Life Saving Clubs, including the Woodside Beach Surf Life Saving Club, to assist with the costs of maintenance, reporting, training audits, information technology support and general administration.

The Woodside Beach Surf Life Saving Club was founded in 1968 and has been providing a lifesaving patrol service at Woodside Beach for more than 40 years,” Mr Ryan said.

“The clubs members help to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for swimmers and beach goers during the warmer months.”

Mr Ryan said the Woodside Beach Surf Life Saving Club offered a range of educational and training programs for its members and the community, including the Nippers Program, Bronze Medallion and Surf Rescue Certificate.

“Over the years the training and knowledge provided by the Woodside Beach Surf Life Saving Club has enabled its members to save countless lives and make the beach and waters of Sandy Point a safer place for the community to enjoy.”

Mr Ryan said Victorian Life Saving Clubs and its members provided an invaluable service to the community and this funding would help to reduce the administrative burden on volunteers and will assist with the costs of club house maintenance and insurance.

“The Coalition Government recognises the important role that Surf Life Saving Clubs and volunteers play in protecting the lives of Victorians,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Ryan said the $5,000 grant is from the Government’s $9.5 million budget package for Life Saving Victoria and will be provided to clubs annually over the next four years.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 108 970

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