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Sunday, 2 November 2014

Denis Napthine $65 million Better Bay Plan

Premier Denis Napthine today unveiled a $65 million Better Bay Plan and announced that commercial netting in Port Phillip Bay and Corio Bay will be phased out

Coalition delivers $65 million Better Bay Plan
Sunday, 02 November 2014
Port Phillip Bay will be protected and restored for all Victorians to enjoy under a re-elected Victorian Coalition Government.
Premier Denis Napthine today unveiled a $65 million Better Bay Plan and announced that commercial netting in Port Phillip Bay and Corio Bay will be phased out.
Dr Napthine said the comprehensive plan focused on preserving and rehabilitating one of the state's best assets, while also building important community infrastructure to enable more people to enjoy the picturesque Port Phillip Bay.
A re-elected Napthine Government's Better Bay Plan will deliver:
  • A $20.5 million investment into new and upgraded bike paths around Port Phillip Bay;
  • $16.7 million to protect the bay against the impacts of erosion, litter and marine pests;
  • $4.29 million to upgrade and improve fishing piers; and
  • $3.07 million for Beach Patrol volunteers and investment into Surf Life Saving Clubs.
"Port Phillip Bay is one of the many assets that makes Melbourne the world's most livable city and makes Victoria the best state in Australia," Dr Napthine said.
"Our Better Bay Plan is the only integrated strategy to keep the Bay beautiful and enhance its amenity for more people to enjoy.
"We will deliver this $65 million initiative because Port Phillip Bay is the heart of Victoria, it's where we spend time with our friends and families and it is definitely worth protecting for future generations," Dr Napthine said.
Dr Napthine said the Victorian Coalition Government was also committed to improving recreational fishing opportunities for Victorians and if re-elected, would allocate $20 million over four years towards a buyback of commercial licences for Port Phillip Bay and Corio Bay.

"This will significantly improve recreational fishing opportunities through greater fish numbers in the bay, which will in turn boost the recreational fishing industry and see benefits flow on to local businesses."
"Our vision is for Port Phillip Bay and Corio Bay to be recreational fishing meccas for locals and visitors," Dr Napthine said.
The $20 million funding commitment over four years would provide a fair and equitable exit strategy for licence holders and the buyback would be phased to minimise the impacts to the commercial fishing industry.
An independent panel would be established to make recommendations to the Coalition Government on how the buyback would be structured and commercial netting will be phased out. The panel would consult with the relevant peak bodies such as the Seafood Industry Victoria and Victorian Recreational Fishing (VRFish) and key stakeholders Future Fish, Australian Fishing Trading Association and others.

Victorian election 2014: Fishing nets to be removed from Port Phillip Bay

Tom Cowie November 02, 2014
Commercial fishing nets will be removed from Port Phillip Bay within 10 years, under an election package promised by the Coalition.
Premier Denis Napthine on Sunday pledged $65 million for an assortment of programs to improve the bay, including $20 million to begin a buyback of commercial fishing licenses.
The money would fund an independent panel to advise on the best way to proceed with the buyback and how much each licence would cost.
There was also $20.3 million promised to build bike paths around the bay and $16.7 million to protect it from litter, marine pests and erosion.
Dr Napthine said the package would help enhance and preserve Port Phillip Bay, which was a significant driver of tourism.
He said the removal of commercial fishing would mean more fish for local anglers.
"This will be a huge boost to 750,000 recreational fishers who will be guaranteed a better catch when we don't have commercials net fishing in Corio and Port Phillip Bay," he said.
Water Minister Peter Walsh said the recreational fishing industry was worth $2.5 billion to the Victorian economy.
He said there were 42 commercial fishing licenses in Victoria, with 27 still active.
The commercial fishing industry would be consulted on the buyback, he said.
"They will have an opportunity to be part of the panel that gives advice on the buyback and how it would work," he said.

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