Delivering for Malvern
As your State Member of Parliament, I am interested to know the issues that affect you in the Malvern electorate. Below are just a few of the issues I have raised in Parliament or elsewhere on behalf of our local community.
Please contact me if you wish to discuss these or any other matters of concern to you as a resident of the Malvern electorate.
I have continued to stand up in Parliament on behalf of residents from the Malvern electorate in relation to planning developments opposed by the community. One recent example was my speech in the Legislative Assembly raising concerns regarding the proposed development at 590 Orrong Road. I highlighted the damage to local amenity and overload to local infrastructure the development would cause.
Our local schools offer an excellent quality of education and we have active and engaged teachers, principals and school councils. I have been working with school communities and fellow members of the Victorian Coalition Government to secure funding and support for local schools so as to ensure that our children have the best possible learning environment.
Since our election victory in November 2010, a number of initiatives benefitting local schools have been announced. This includes $10.5 million being provided to nearby Ashwood Secondary College for the construction of new buildings, a $300,000 grant to Sunnyside Kindergarten in East Malvern for new rooms, funding for the installation of a double storey portable classroom for Armadale Primary School, and a $200,000 feasibility study into a new government secondary school in the Stonnington area.
The previous Brumby Government’s decision to extend clearway times throughout this electorate without consultation hurt local small businesses (including our famed shopping strips) and forced more traffic into residential side streets, yet had no meaningful impact on travel times.
I am pleased to confirm that, pursuant to the Victorian Coalition Government's 2010 electoral commitment, these much criticised extended clearway times have been overturned and are no longer in place.
I am a strong advocate for the brave men and women of Victoria Police who protect our local community and I am committed to maintaining a police station in the Malvern electorate. However, we need more police to ensure that Victorians can feel safe in their homes and moving around their community. That is why I am supportive of the Victorian Coalition Government’s policy to massively increase police numbers over the next two years, together with sentencing reforms and new, tougher laws to deter anti-social behaviour.
The Coalition Government pledged at the 2010 Victorian election to have an additional 1,700 police officers protecting Victoria's streets, including in the Malvern electorate, by the end of 2014. Currently we are well on track to meet that promise, with 850 extra police officers already in place.
Another measure I have been strongly supportive of has been the introduction of Protective Services Officers (PSO's) at railway stations. Ensuring that railway stations remain a safe environment at all times is of the utmost concern, with public transport users entitled to travel in safety and without fear of unruly behaviour. There are currently 93 PSO's operating at railway stations, with 940 to be operating by the end of November 2014.
Malvern’s five level crossings at major arterial roads create massive traffic congestion, particularly during the morning and afternoon peak periods. The RACV has identified a number of them as being among the most dangerous in Victoria.
While there is considerable expense involved in removing the level crossings (e.g. by grade separation), the Victorian Coalition Government has committed $2.5 million to a grade separation of the Burke Road level crossing in Gardiner. This will allow for engineering studies to be conducted, as well as for consultation to identify appropriate options and to determine the full costs and scope of a grade separation. This is part of a wider Coalition policy aimed at removing level crossings across Victoria so as to ease major traffic congestion and provide greater safety for all road users.
A fair share for Malvern
Whether it is through stamp duty, land tax, payroll tax or other taxes, Malvern residents contribute a significant amount of revenue to the Victorian Government. However, over the past decade, there has been a lack of expenditure on infrastructure and services in our local community.
Malvern residents are prepared to pay our fair share in taxes and charges to Spring Street, and I have been standing up on your behalf to ensure you are treated fairly in return.
These are just a few of the many issues that I have raised on behalf of our local community. If you have any comments or further suggestions, please contact me.