Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (11:40:22): (406) My question is directed to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services. I am seeking information on behalf of my broader electorate community regarding the reintroduction of the police in schools program. The wonderfully successful police in schools program continued for 16 years until axed in 2005 by the then Labor government despite a Department of Justice-commissioned Monash University study into the program in 2004 which found the program was effective and recommended its continuation. The program also allowed local police to establish positive relationships with local young people by visiting the schools regularly and getting to know them and letting them know that police are on their side and that they are their friend, not their enemy. Up until the program was axed there were 75 police on the ground around Victoria regularly visiting 650 primary and secondary schools, speaking on the dangers of drugs and alcohol, leading anti-crime and good citizenship initiatives and developing critical early links with young people. By removing that relationship-building opportunity between impressionable kids and those who are responsible for minimising criminal and antisocial behaviour, the Victorian Labor Party contributed directly to a worsening situation of a lack of respect for authority and combative relationships between police and our youth.
Mr BURGESS — Over the past four years I have visited the majority of electorates across Victoria, many of them numerous times, to meet and talk to many hundreds of small and medium‑sized businesses. Often it is not what they say that you learn from; it is what they do not say. Numbers of these businesses described how they had met with their local MP and a few had even met the minister, but the feeling they were given was that they were expected to sit there and listen while the MP and/or minister spoke.
Mr BURGESS — I want to acknowledge Bayside Christian College, Langwarrin. On 12 September I was pleased to be invited to address year 9 Bayside Christian College students, which was great fun because it was about the role and responsibilities of a member of Parliament. I get a real buzz out of meeting with students and telling them about the role of an MP —
Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (11:37:45) — (15 000) My question is to the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change. I am seeking information on behalf of my Blind Bight and Warneet communities about the provision of a new public toilet in Warneet. Blind Bight and Warneet constituents have stated that a new public toilet with facilities for people with disabilities is badly needed on Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning land at the Warneet boat ramp. The old toilet is unusable. It has no lights, it is too far from the boat ramp and the local council has stated that the area is in fact snake infested. Local residents have stated that on weekends, when over 1000 people visit the town to use the boat ramp, visitors are forced to use the surrounding brush as a makeshift toilet, creating not only a hygiene problem but an embarrassing situation for adults and children alike, while the situation is immeasurably worse for people with a disability.
Mr BURGESS — I am again asking this government to provide badly needed natural gas reticulation to the coastal villages of Tooradin, Blind Bight, Warneet and Cannons Creek. The shadow minister for energy and I were in Tooradin to discuss the need for natural gas to be made available. Following the shadow minister’s visit, I surveyed the residents in the villages and gauged the local uptake of reticulated gas. The support was overwhelming. The needs of the residents of this village are most important.
Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (11:57:38) — Since Labor has been governing Victoria for 15 of the last 19 years, Cranbourne South Primary School has been left to rot. Over time the Labor Party has mentioned Cranbourne South Primary School four times. Once, late in 2014, the then Labor shadow Minister for Education arrived to announce that Labor would close and bulldoze the school. Then, just before the 2014 election, Labor promised that if elected it would remove all the school’s asbestos.
Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (09:57:11) — Following a long but ultimately successful fight together with my community to stop the Brumby Labor government’s bitumen and urea plants being forced onto the foreshore at Crib Point, we now face a similar attack on our community from AGL and the Andrews government wanting to force a gas facility on us. On 10 August last year and again this week the Andrews government made it very clear that it is behind AGL’s push to force its facility on the Crib Point community. After a great deal of consultation with my local residents I have made it very clear to AGL that, if they continue to force their facility onto Crib Point constituents and we are elected in November this year, we will stop them. More than a decade ago during the fight to stop the bitumen plant, the federal member for Flinders, Greg Hunt, and I made the commitment that we would fight any reindustrialisation of Crib Point, and we intend to keep that promise.
Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (15:04:25) — It is a pleasure to rise on this matter of public importance (MPI), but it really is just another shonky stunt by a shonky government — a shonky and failed government, a government that is full of spin, full of thieves and really never gets on with the job. All they are ever trying to do is push people around and bully their way through processes.
Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (09:55:58) — Union organisers were sent to visit all Victorian schools to try to pressure cleaners into joining. Only 12 of those many hundreds did. The union told the cleaners that if they did not join they would lose their jobs. Now it is clear for everyone to see who is really running this state, because true to that promise every one of those many hundreds of metropolitan cleaners were sacked.
Mr BURGESS (Hastings) (11:55:43) — (14 779) My question is to the Minister for Public Transport. I am seeking information on behalf of my constituents about matching funding from the Andrews state Labor government for the duplication and electrification of the Frankston rail line to Baxter, following last week’s $450 million plan jointly announced in Baxter by both the Prime Minister and the Victorian Leader of the Opposition. My community is very excited about this stage 1 of the electrification and duplication of the entire Stony Point line. It is critically important transport infrastructure.