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John Landy Appointed New Victorian Governor

Former Olympic athlete John Landy has been appointed the new Governor of Victoria by the Premier, Steve Bracks.

Landy will take office on New Year’s Day 2001 as the state’s 26th Governor.

Announcing the decision, Bracks denied any knowledge of an agreement promising an extension of the term of the incumbent Governor, Sir James Gobbo. Gobbo was appointed by Jeff Kennett in 1997 for a term of slightly less than 4 years, due to the possibility of Australia voting to become a republic. [Read more…]

Historic Victory As Labor Wins Benalla By-Election; Rural Voters Vent More Anger On Coalition

Whilst counting of postal, absentee and pre-poll votes is not yet complete, the ALP appears to have scored an historic victory by winning the National Party electorate of Benalla in today’s by-election.

Benalla By-Election 13-5-00
Candidate Party %
SMITH, Maurie Ind 0.72
HILL, Bill Ind 6.82
THORPE, Alf ARP 0.29
ALLEN, Denise ALP 41.98
MACKENZIE, Janet Greens 2.05
SYKES, Bill NPA 41.00
ROWE, Geoff Ind 7.14

With results from all 45 polling booths now in, the ALP’s Denise Allen has 41.98% of the primary vote, compared to 41% for the National Party’s Bill Sykes.

On the two-party-preferred count, Allen leads the Nationals by 50.43% to 49.57%, a swing of 7.84% over the September 1999 result when the seat was won by the National Party’s former leader, Pat McNamara.

The 1999 result was itself a 7.85% swing from the 1996 general election. Since 1996, the ALP has secured a total swing of 15.69% in Benalla, an electorate held continuously by the conservative parties since 1904.

The ALP’s victory in Benalla gives it 44 seats in the Legislative Assembly, compared to 41 for the coalition parties. There are 3 independents who have committed themselves to supporting the Bracks government. [Read more…]

Victorian Parliament To Be Venue For Commemorative Federation Sitting

The Victorian Parliament in joint sitting today passed a motion inviting the Federal Parliament to convene in Spring Street on 10 May 2001 for a Commemorative Federation sitting.

Motion moved by the Premier, Mr Steve Bracks.

“That this Joint Sitting of the Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly of the Parliament of Victoria invites the President and Members of the Senate and the Speaker and Members of the House of Representatives to convene at the Royal Exhibition Buildings, Carlton, on 9 May 2001, for the Joint Commemorative Ceremonial Federation Sitting and Commemoration Ceremony, and at Parliament House, Melbourne, on 10 May 2001, for the Commemorative Federation Sitting of each House of the Commonwealth Parliament and conveys its best wishes for the success of the said meetings that will mark the centenary of the first sittings of the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia.”

[Read more…]

Victorian State Budget 2000-01

This is the full text of the Victorian Labor government’s first Budget.

The Budget was delivered by the Premier and Treasurer, Steve Bracks. [Read more…]

Bracks Delivers Victorian Budget

Victoria’s Labor government has delivered its first budget.

Click here for the full text of Premier Steve Bracks’s Budget Speech.

The Victorian budget projects a surplus of $592 million in the next financial year and state debt falling from $6.2 billion to $4.7 billion.

The budget establishes a $1 billion infrastructure program over the next 4 years and promises business tax cuts from July 2001.

$967 million is to be spent on schools, hospitals, transport and other community facilities.

The government claims it has delivered the bulk of its election promises. Rural and regional areas which swung heavily to Labor in last year’s election have been rewarded with a large number of spending projects.

Victorian Election 1999 – Scott Bennett & Gerard Newman

This is a research paper on the 1999 Victorian state election.

The paper is by Scott Bennett, of the Politics and Public Administration Group, and Gerard Newman, of the Statistics Group, part of the Information and Research Services of the Department of the Parliamentary Library. [Read more…]

Victorian Parliament Opened; Andrianopoulos New Speaker; Kennett Resigns

The Victorian Parliament opened today with the election of the Labor member for Mill Park, Alex Andrianopoulos, as Speaker.

Contrary to speculation, the National Party did not field a candidate for the position. With the provision of a Speaker, and the support of the 3 independents, the minority Labor government has a 44-43 margin in the lower house. An absolute majority of 45 votes is needed for constitutional changes.

The new Speaker, Mr. Andrianopoulos, has been a member of parliament for 14 years. He was first elected to the Legislative Assembly seat of St. Albans in 1985. Following the abolition of the seat in the 1991 redistribution, he won the seat of Mill Park. The new Speaker was born in Tripolis in 1955, migrating to Australia in 1965.

Former Premier, Jeff Kennett, has resigned from Parliament. His resignation letter was read to the Legislative assembly chamber by the Speaker shortly after 5pm today. Earlier, Kennett had written to his Burwood constituents advising them of his intention to resign from Parliament. He said he wants to spend more time with his family. Few observers are surprised that the former Premier does not want to face the new Labor government across the Assembly chamber. A by-election in Burwood will be held before Christmas.

The new Victorian parliament was officially opened by the Governor, Sir James Gobbo, this afternoon. The Bracks government faced its first Question Time at 10.25pm today.

Support for Independents Remains Firm

The Age reports today that voter support for the 3 Victorian independents remains firm, but has slipped slightly, since their decision to support the Bracks-led minority Labor government.

Bracks Labor Government Ministry

The Bracks Labor Government in Victoria was sworn in on Wednesday October 20, 1999.

This followed the decision by the 3 independents in the Legislative Assembly (Russell Savage, Craig Ingram & Susan Davies) to give their support to the formation of a minority Labor government.

The average age of the Government is 44.3 years. There are 8 women (44%) in the Ministry, more than in any other Australian government.

First Bracks ALP Ministry 1999
No. Portfolio Minister Age
Premier; Treasurer; Multicultural Affairs Steve Bracks
Deputy Premier; Health; Planning John Thwaites
Attorney-General; Manufacturing; Racing Rob Hulls
Finance; Assistant Treasurer; State and Regional Development John Brumby
Transport; House Manager Peter Batchelor
Education; Arts Mary Delahunty
Police and Emergency Services; Corrections Andre Haermeyer
Housing; Aged Care; assisting in Health Bronwyn Pike
Sport, Recreation and Youth Affairs; assisting in Planning Justin Madden
Small Business; Consumer Affairs Marsha Thomson
Energy and Resources; Ports; assisting in State Development Candy Broad
Local Government; WorkCover; assisting in Transport (Roads) Bob Cameron
Gaming; Major Projects; Tourism; assisting in Multicultural Affairs John Pandazopoulos
Agriculture; Aboriginal Affairs Keith Hamilton
Environment and Conservation; Women’s Affairs Sherryl Garbutt
Leader in the Legislative Council; Industrial Relations; assisting in WorkCover Monica Gould
Post-compulsory Education, Training and Employment Lyn Kosky
Community Services Christine Campbell



Labor Government Takes Office in Victoria

Victorian Labor Premier, Steve BracksA minority Labor government headed by Steve Bracks was sworn into office just before noon on Wednesday, marking the end of 7 years and 14 days of coalition government under Jeff Kennett.

The new government has 42 seats in the Legislative Assembly and will be supported by the 3 Independent members of parliament. The new Liberal/National Party Opposition will have 43 seats.

The Labor Government will not control the Legislative Council, where the coalition parties hold 30 seats to Labor’s 14.

Bracks will head the first Labor adminstration in Victoria since Joan Kirner was defeated by Kennett in October 1992. Kirner succeeded John Cain, who had brought the ALP to office after 27 years in Opposition.