Mildura Weekly : Friday March 28 2014 Vol 8 No 21
www.milduraweekly.com.au 4 Mildura Weekly – 28/03/14 Relay For Life THE Mildura Relay For Life will be held this weekend at Old Aerodrome Ovals. Running from 3pm tomorrow until 9am Sun- day, the Cancer Council Victoria event is a fund-raiser for cancer research, support, edu- cation and advocacy programs. More informa- tion is available by contacting 1300 656 585 or by visiting www.relayforlife.org.au. Lunar Festival THE Red Cliffs Rotary Club Lunar Festival will be held tomorrow at Barclay Square from 2pm. The annual event will include a street parade, musical concert, children’s entertainment, vin- tage car displays and food and market stalls. Entry costs a gold coin donation with proceeds going towards the rotary club’s community programs. Dareton markets THE Dareton markets are being held tomorrow on Tapio Street from 8am to 1pm. The day will include fresh produce, cake stalls, bric-a-brac, clothing stalls and a sausage sizzle. More in- formation is available by contacting 0428 306 460. Wentworth markets THE Wentworth Rotary Club markets will be held this Sunday at Wharf Street from 9am to 1pm. The markets will include a wide variety of stalls with more information available by con- tacting 5027 3636 or by visiting 0418 571 682. Ukulele sing-a-long THE Sunraysia Ukulele Network will be hold- ing a singalong at the Old Mildura Homestead this Sunday, from 2pm to 4pm. More informa- tion is available by contacting 5024 1986. Historical meeting THE Mildura and District Historical Society will be holding their monthly meeting at the Carn- egie Centre on Wednesday, April 2 at 7.30pm. Members and non-members are welcome with more information available by contacting 5021 3090. VICTORIA’S peak farming rep- resentative body, the Victorian Farmers Federation, says the State Government should use money from the proposed sale of the Port of Melbourne to upgrade the State’s ageing rail freight infrastructure. The call from the VFF’s Grains Group president, Brett Hosking, comes ahead of the organisation’s Grains Confer- ence next week in Ballarat. “Both the Coalition and La- bor are hellbent on selling off the Port of Melbourne to bank- roll a raft of election promises to metropolitan Melbourne,” Mr Hosking said this week. “Politicians on both sides of Parliament need to remember the port was built on the back of food and fibre exports, which is still our big- gest export from Mel- bourne. “So if they’re going to sell or lease the port, then farmers want to see the bulk of the $6billion in forecast revenue going back to regional Victoria.” Speaking from Parliament yesterday, Member for Mildura Peter Crisp said he backed the sale of the Port of Melbourne as well as a push for a slice of the proceeds of that sale. “That money will go into infrastructure in Victoria and we have a big infrastructure back- log in this State, including the Mildura rail line,” Mr Crisp said. “I’m pushing for the Mildu- ra rail line to get a slice of Victo- ria’s infrastruc- ture investment, infactIwantitto beatthetopofthe list.” The need to upgrade and standardise Victoria’s rail freight network sits at the top of next week’s VFF Grains Con- ference agenda and follows two recent major disruptions to the rail line. The first was caused by bushfires near Ouyen which de- stroyed thousands of wooden sleepers, while a freight train de- railed just weeks later. Both disruptions cost Sun- raysia-based freight operators hundreds of thousands of dol- lars and disrupted shipments of grain and other produce. Mr Hosking said the cost of upgrading the rail line, which he estimates at $250million, pales in comparison to the contribu- tion of Victoria’s cereal grains exports to the State’s economy. “In 2013, cereal grains were Victoria’s most valuable export, generating more than $2.2bil- lion to the State’s economy, yet we’re struggling to find a mere $250million to invest in our fu- ture?” he said. Mr Crisp yesterday agreed primary production exports had played an important role, but stressed there had also been other drivers. “He’s correct that exports from our primary industries have been major drivers of the port, but it’s a modern port now and there are a whole lot of things that go on at the port, however agriculture exports are a large part of that mix,” he said. “The Mildura freight line is the longest corridor through a great deal of wheat country, so it’s a major grain corridor as well.” Mr Hosking said that with an increasing reliance on agri- culture in the future, the Vic- torian Government should be focussing on ways to make it more productive. “The reality is that as our manufacturing sector declines, it will be agriculture and agri- business that pick up the slack and deliver the next generation of jobs,” he said. “However, we can’t do that unless future governments in- vest in the rural and regional infrastructure we need to grow, transport, process and deliver food and fibre to the world.” Mr Crisp said the two derail- ments and fire damage on the rail line had raised its profile within the walls of Parliament. “Those incidents have kept the Mildura freight corridor front of mind with the gov- ernment, and I continue to advocate for the upgrade every week that I’m in Parliament,” he said. VFF rail funding call • Victorian Farmers Federation Grains Group president Brett Hosking. INSET: Member for Mildura Peter Crisp. of food and fibre exports, which is still our big- revenue going back to Speaking from Parliament ria’s infrastruc- ture investment, infactIwantitto beatthetopofthe list.” The need to upgrade 829 Fifteenth Street Mildura | Phone 5022 9313 HAIR STYLIST WANTED BE YOUR OWN BOSS. A GREAT CHAIR RENTAL OPPORTUNITY FOR FURTHER DETAILS, VISIT MARIA Frank Stockman Plumbing has gained a reputation for providing clients with the best service, professional back up and value for money. Frank Stockman plumbing has been established for 20 years and are licensed for VIC & NSW. We specialise in providing high level 24hrs a day, 7 days a week service and are members of the Master Plumbers Association. We can handle any domestic, commercial or industrial plumbing problems fast and efficiently with our team of experienced plumbing staff. 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Friday March 21 2014 Vol 8 No 20
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