THE Liberal Party is confident that they will have a chance to take the seat in Shepparton at the upcoming election, with State Leader for the Liberal Party, Matthew Guy telling The Adviser that there has been enough talk about what Shepparton needs and now is time for action.
While he was in town announcing the opening of the party’s pre-selection nomination process, Mr Guy said that the party’s focus would be on education, health, continuing the work of the Population Taskforce and transport, including the bypass and rail.
Mr Guy said, “The Liberal Party hasn’t stood here (in Shepparton) since 2006 and we will put our best foot forward.
“It will be a hotly contested seat. There will be an Independent, The Labour Party, The Liberal Party and The Nationals, so Shepparton voters will be spoilt for choice.
“Locally, I think there is a keen focus on the railway and the condition and quality of the rail service. From our point of view Shepparton in the same prism that you would view Ballarat and Bendigo, so we view it as a major regional city that needs to have services attached to that. And of course health is another important aspect that we have on our minds.
“We’ve had a Population Taskforce that has been around for two years that has been to Shepparton three times and we now have a local taskforce which has been doing a good job at looking at decentralising Melbourne’s growth to areas in regional Victoria.
“There are also state-wide issues that will be our focus such as crime, law and order and the cost of living. We will have a little bit more to talk about when it comes to electricity in the near future too.
“We are keen to stand. We have changed the way our party campaigns. We’ve done a lot of work locally and put a lot of effort into finding candidates. I am very confident that we will be putting to the people of Shepparton a very good quality candidate for them to choose from. This is a unique time for this city.
“From the bypass to the trains to the schools, there is a lot of interest in what is happening in Shepparton, and this election will provide Shepparton with the chance to put its list of ideas and needs forward.
“There has been a lot of talk about what’s happening, but talk is cheap and people want action,” Mr Guy said.
Member for Northern Victoria, Wendy Lovell said, “There was $10M put aside in the last state budget for a little bit of planning for the bypass, but the City of Greater Shepparton have been asking for $20M to complete the planning process so we are looking for a little bit more.
“I have a lot of things that I want to see happen for Shepparton and will be continuing to work hard to make sure they are on the agenda.”