Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney has raised concerns in Parliament over the State Coalition Government’s inability to stimulate the economy and create jobs in Portland.
Amid the chaos of leadership changes and Members of the Government quitting the Liberal party, Ms Tierney voiced the concerns of the Portland community which has seen alarming numbers of businesses closed and jobs lost.
Ms Tierney said the Member for South Coast, now Victorian Premier Denis Napthine had abandoned Portland and the south west over the last two years.
“The number of vacant shops and the closure of the local Mitre 10 store is very alarming, prompting community leaders to express their deep concern.
“Job cuts have occurred at both major employers Keppel Prince and Alcoa,
“The community is seeing newspaper headlines such as “Another Business Closes Doors” and the talk of the town is how over the past two years things have changed so dramatically.
“Sometimes there needs to be an interventionist government policy to get things moving, to pull things together and to make sure there is a fair slice of the pie for all communities.
“The action I seek is for the Minister to provide the community with a plan that takes Portland, its local community and its economy into the future, and I push that as a matter of urgency because we cannot stand any more closures or job cuts in Portland,” Ms Tierney said.
After a horror week for the Liberal National Party that has seen Ted Baillieu quit and Denis Napthine installed as Premier, Ms Tierney has called for Premier Napthine to show some real leadership.
“I congratulate Mr Napthine on his appointment as Premier of Victoria on his birthday.
“However this is no time to celebrate as the Victorian economy has fallen into recession under this Government with tens of thousands of Victorian jobs lost.
“It is time Mr Napthine stand up for Victorians and show some genuine leadership.
“Mr Napthine must stop the blame game on issues such as the Warrnambool Cancer Centre which he promised will be built.
“It’s time Mr Napthine stop attempting to take credit for Labor Government initiatives like the West Portland Sewerage Scheme and the Warrnambool Hospital Redevelopment and focus on creating jobs and supporting business in Portland and around Victoria,” Ms Tierney said.