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New rescue boats for Portland and Warrnambool coast guards.



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David Hawker MP Federal Member for Wannon Electorate Office: 190 Gray Street, Hamilton, Vic., 3300 Ph: (03) 5572 1100 or Local Call 1300 131 692 Fax: (03) 55 72 1141 Email: David.Hawker.MP@aph.gov.au Web: www.davidhawker.com.au

Media Release The Hon David Hawker MP Speaker of the House of Representatives Federal Member for Wannon

5 July 2005

EMBARGOED UNTIL 6TH JULY 2005 - 11.30AM NEW RESCUE BOATS FOR PORTLAND AND WARRNAMBOOL COAST GUARDS

Portland and Warrnambool Volunteer Coast Guard Associations have received a $165,000 boost from the Australian Government to help them secure two new rescue vessels, as part of their Great South Coast Rescue Vessels project.

Member for Wannon, David Hawker, expressed his delight as he announced the Regional Partnerships funding today at the Portland Yacht Club.

“I’m thrilled that the Australian Government is supporting our communities and visitors to the beautiful coastline of South West Victoria by helping to ensure their safety on our waters,” Mr Hawker said.

“This funding is recognition of the important contribution and sacrifices made by volunteers, especially those involved in search and rescue missions at sea.”

The funds will go towards the construction of two much needed vessels that will meet the required standards for rescue operations. The vessels are the key component of an initiative by the Flotillas to extend search and rescue capabilities and provide 24 hour monitoring and patrolling of the south west coast.

Since its inception 18 months ago, the Portland Volunteer Coast Guard has received 22 emergency call outs for situations involving flat batteries, engine break-downs, and most recently, assisting a sailing vessel that lost its rudder in rough seas.

The Warrnambool Coast Guard hopes to be able to deliver the same service by Christmas.

Australian Volunteer Coast Guard Association’s Ray Campbell said that the Government funding is the result of a great community effort.

“We are really, really pleased with this result. The community at all levels has really come together to get behind this project, and their co-operation has brought about this first-class result,” he said.

“This kind of funding really makes things happen, it will ensure the project comes to fruition.”

Mr Hawker expressed his thanks to the Greater Green Triangle Area Consultative Committee (GGT ACC) for working with the local community to support their ideas.

“This is another great result for the GGT ACC, one that will deliver benefits to the community well into the future,” he said.

Communities seeking funding through Regional Partnerships should contact their local Area Consultative Committee. For further information go to www.regionalpartenrships.gov.au or www.acc.gov.au

Media contact: Jane Templeton

(03) 5572 1100