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Local volunteers raise awareness of SES funding issues

May 20, 2024 12:26 pm in by
Photo: Supplied

Local SES members have travelled to Melbourne today to highlight the significant funding shortfalls the organisation faces.

Over 200 volunteers from across the state conducted a public awareness drive across the Bolte Bridge just after 10am.

The organisation says the current reliance on volunteer-led fundraising to maintain equipment, facilities and vehicles is unsustainable.

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“We don’t have a huge pool of money that we can scrape 10 per cent off, and this means that units like Ballarat have to find creative ways of saving money or trying to raise money to get basic rescue equipment,” says Ballarat SES controller Gordon Hicks.

Mr. Hicks says Victoria is the only state in Australia that doesn’t give the SES part of the emergency service levy.

He says the unit gets around $30,000 from the state government, with council matching the funding, but for a unit with multi-million-dollar assets it barely covers the power bill and part of the fuel bill.

“We have to use money that people donate to pay for those little extra things,” he said.

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