An overwhelming backlash from the community has forced the Baillieu Government to reverse its decision to dramatically cut funding from public libraries, Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney said today.
Ms Tierney said the Colac Otway Shire and the local community should be congratulated on their efforts in forcing Mr Baillieu to see reason.
“After threatening to strip millions of dollars from Victoria’s public libraries Local Government Minister Jeanette Powell has buckled to public pressure, reversing a decision which could have seen surf coast libraries with fewer programs and reduced opening hours.
“Ms Powell was silenced by a passionate community campaign, and if she tries to short-change our libraries again, she will meet the same fierce resistance.”
Ms Tierney said that the Baillieu Government was still holding firm on funding cuts to childcare centres and kindergartens across the state.
“This has been a great victory for our community – we must now re-double our efforts to fight cuts to other vital programs,” Ms Tierney said.
“If you can find the money to fund our local libraries, you can find the money to fund the Take-a-Break occasional childcare and Kids – Go for your life programs.
“Mr Baillieu’s excuses just won’t wash with the community – find the funds,” Ms Tierney said.