Western District MP James Purcell has been responsible for more than $150 million in project funding for the south west over the past four years.
The Vote 1 Local Jobs leader has used his crossbench position in the Legislative Council to negotiate funding for many small community and major local developments over his four year term, and instigated many changes in legislation that bring priceless benefits.
"It's great to see so much money flowing into improvements across the south west and to see the long term benefits to jobs and infrastructure that will bring more jobs and economic benefits in the future," he said.
Funded projects that Mr Purcell has been directly responsible for include:
- $7 million for the Reid Oval upgrades;
- $400,000 for netball facilities at the Koroit Netball Football Club;
- $14.6 million for the Warrnambool Special Development School;
- $7 million for South West Healthcare;
- $4.2 million for Moyne Health;
- $114 million for Melbourne to Warrnambool train line upgrades.
"Many more small community projects have seen funding, and many more inclusions in legislation have provided community benefits that are priceless," he said.
"We banned fracking; we won funding for the suicide prevention programs; we raised stamp duty exemption levels for first home buyers in regional areas to make it easier for young farmers to buy land." he said.
Mr Purcell's campaigning to bring government attention to Deakin University's decision to pull out of the Warrnambool campus was instrumental in keeping the university in the town and his motion to review VicRoads management of regional roads has already led to the establishment of a Ballarat based division to manage country roads.
"Sometimes it's little things that make the biggest difference, such as the work we did with the Sports Minister to intervene to remove proposed caps on junior football numbers and adding minimum local content requirements to our renewable energy targets to save jobs in Portland, which will provide ongoing opportunities across the region," he said.
This four year term had proved the power of independents in state politics and Mr Purcell said it was in the south west's interest to break with tradition and vote independent in the next election.
"At best, we get an independent seat in the lower house where we can negotiate for the benefit of our community. At worst, we break the "safe" seat culture for our region and make the parties work for our attention.
"We've set the stage for change and growth and I sincerely hope we'll be able to do more in the next parliament," said Mr Purcell.
View project wins at www.jamespurcell.com.au/getting-results/