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Petition demands bus boost

A NEW petition calling for better bus services for South Gippsland has been launched.

The e-petition was unveiled by South Gippsland Shire Councillor Andrew McEwen, the chair of South West Gippsland Transport Group. Eastern Victoria Region MLC Melina Bath has agreed to sponsor the petition and Gippsland South MLA Danny O’Brien has confirmed his support for the petition to improve bus services.

The e-petition to the Victorian Legislative Council requests the council to call on the government to allocate equitable funding for the provision of local bus services or a telebus service for South Gippsland,  in particular  for Leongatha and Korumburra,  and for improvement in inadequate cross regional and Melbourne services.

The petitions will be open until Friday, February 2, 2018 and will be tabled on the first sitting day of the council of 2018.

Cr McEwen said, “The report prepared by the group identified a systematic under resourcing of bus services for South Gippsland.  South Gippsland has no local bus services unlike most shires of similar population.  Leongatha and Korumburra are in reality in close proximity with a population approaching 10,000 people.”

He said:

  • there were 18 towns with smaller populations and that have local bus services;
  • 72 percent of people in South Gippsland have poor access to services such as hospitals, health centres, courts, TAFE/uni, Centrelink, Centrelink agencies and pharmacies;
  • some 20,000 people do not have ready access to important services, which others take for granted; and
  • South Gippsland is significantly disadvantaged in terms of ready access to public transport with only 8.5 percent having a bus stop within 800m from home versus 35 percent for Gippsland councils or the state average of 74 percent.

Mr O’Brien raised the matter in parliament last week, saying, “The South and West Gippsland Transport Group has launched a petition and campaign for better local transport in the Bass Coast and South Gippsland shires, particularly the latter, which has no internal bus services in the shire at all.

“This region has a population of over 60,000 yet little public transport. I urge the government to undertake feasibility work on new and improved bus services throughout the region, in particular to gauge the likely level of demand.”

The link to the e-petition can be found on the group’s Facebook page (South and West Gippsland Transport Group) and website: http://www.swgt.org.au

Short URL: https://thestar.com.au/?p=23082

Posted by on Nov 8 2017. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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