Federal Election DownUnder-cision 2013

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Candidates for the seat of Melbourne Ports were asked:

What do you feel are the biggest issues voters face at this election?
Michael Danby

Australian Labor Party

I feel that many of the issues of principal concern to voters in Melbourne Ports are not too different from those of voters across Australia. People want to know that their Government has a positive plan for Australia, not empty slogans.


Labor is the only Party with such a plan. Below, I’ve outlined some of the policies and plans that Labor is implementing which are about making this country an even better place.

DisabilityCare is going to radically improve the lives of hundreds of thousands of Australians with disabilities  and their families


The Better Schools plan is going to reform the way our schools are run, and provide average annual funding increase of $1.8 million to Victorian Schools.

The National Broadband Network is going to provide Australia with the best communications network of any country, putting us at the cutting edge of the digital revolution.

The floating carbon price, is an intelligent market mechanism that will help drive investment in renewable energy, and reduce carbon emissions, helping Australia do its bit to prevent climate change.

Unfortunately, each of these extremely important reforms is in danger if Tony Abbott and his razor gang are elected.  Mr Abbott, doesn’t have plan. Voters may have seen him waiving around a Liberal Party book called ‘Real Solutions’. I’ve read through it, and I could see very little that was concrete, all there is, are platitudes, and slogans.



Kevin Ekendahl

Liberal Party

Melbourne Ports is a great place to live and work.  It’s important for me to ensure that we continue to make this a great place to live and make it even better.

I have been out speaking with local residents and business owners about the issue affecting them.  Overwhelmingly, people are telling me that they’ve had enough of the same old representation in the area and want a change.  This election, people in Melbourne Ports will get that chance to choose change.



I want to make sure our schools are well funded and that the capacity for existing schools is expanded and improved. The shortage of places for schooling has seen the Liberal State Government purchase and plan a new school in South Melbourne.  I am urging the state government to expedite this process to ensure we have a new school sooner, and begin planning for another school.


Housing Affordability & Homelessness 

Housing affordability is a massive issue which many people talk to me about. The cost of living is continually increasing and being able to afford housing in Melbourne Ports continues to be a significant challenge. Having a robust National Rental Affordability Scheme in place is important, especially to assist those people who are most marginalised or disadvantaged.   Homelessness in Australia has increased by 20% since 2007 – much of this homelessness is as result of either mental health issues, substance abuse or marginalisation from family in GLBTI youth.  Having well funded mental health facilities and support services is an integral part of reducing our rate of homelessness.



I’ve always said that you must think globally and act locally.  Protecting our local environment is one of my key priorities should I be successful at the coming election.  I want to ensure we have projects such as flood mitigation in Elwood and Middle Park, sand dune preservation in Port Melbourne and tree planting projects in local parks funded and supported by the Green Army.  Making sure we do our part as a community to combat the effects of climate change is very important.



Melissa Star

Sex Party

There’s a lot of talk right now about the economy and the end of the mining boom, and economic responsibility is very important but it’s not the only issue.

I believe that Melbourne Ports voters want marriage equality and voluntary euthanasia legislated, not just talked about with conscience votes and vague promises. I think most of us don’t want exemptions to anti-discrimination laws that let nursing homes turn away elderly gays and lesbians.

I believe we don’t want scripture classes in public schools, or $20 billion dollars of tax subsidies every year for “promotion of religion”. We definitely don’t want an expensive and futile “war on drugs” that has affected so many Port Melbourne residents and treated recreational drug users as though they were criminals.

I think that enough is enough. It’s your life, and your choice. The Australian Sex Party is a civil liberties party and I’m standing as a candidate for Melbourne ports because I believe that voters want both economic responsibility and personal freedom. We’re an independent party that believes in evidence based policy and looking to science instead of dogma to answer our nation’s challenges.

We’ve got our biggest campaign ever with 29 lower-house candidates across Victoria, and you can find out all about us at www.sexparty.org.au



Ann Birrell

Australian Greens Party

What do I feel are the biggest issues voters in electorate face at this election?

The issues most raised at stalls include: the poor state of politics; our economic future and planning; and global warming and environmental issues. I feel they are all big issues.

Many locals express dismay that the political debate is so negative and shallow and is focused on politics and personalities.

This is important as Australia faces many complex issues. We need thoughtful debate of ideas and policy and evidence based decision making, if we are to get the good answers.

We need to put policy before politics!

Many also raise concern about our economic future, the loss of local jobs and manufacturing. There is concern that planning is short term and adhoc, and that developers have too much influence, when it should be the community and public interest shaping the future shape of our cities. We need better infrastructure planning for schools and public transport. Government to play a central role in planning long term liveable cities and sustainable.

The Greens care about what life will be like in 50 years, not just the next three years. Global warming is an international and local crisis. Australia needs to move to a clean economy and 100% renewable energy as quickly as we can. A local priority is management of increased extreme weather events – storm tide, rain fall and catchment flooding, to address planning, water run off, drainage and infrastructure issues. We need Federal and State Government, Local Councils and utilities to work together across the catchment.
Vince Stefano


The voters of Melbourne Ports, as everywhere, are sick to death of our politicians playing the person and not the issue. We need a return to integrity in Australian politics.

We must ensure our local economy, built on small business, remains strong. We can do this by promoting buy local campaigns, fair trade initiatives, reducing pay roll tax and protecting small business from unfair treatment by government and big business.

A large number of people in the community are concerned that traditional values, religious freedom and the dignity of human life are endangered by extreme legislation. I stand to represent these people.

The people of Melbourne Ports are very charitable and show a great deal of care for the sick and vulnerable. I believe in incresing care provisions, inlcuding health care, palliative care and mental health services. We desperately need government funded superannuation contributions for full-time primary carers – you can read a quick explanation here.

The elecotorate is also concerned about the welfare of asylum seekers and refugees. I believe that asylum seekers and refugees should be treated with much greater dignity than what’s currently being shown to them by our Government.

On the education front, we need to stop cutting and invest more in our universities. We currently rank 25 out of 29 advanced economies in this area – Australian innovation behind world-class products and services is driven by our universities.

People in the electorate have told me of their concern that the Government continues to sell off prime agricultural land to foreign owners. Not only are we losing ownership over our land, but the economic prosperity goes overseas too. To address this issue, I believe that no majority foreign owned entity or individual should be allowed to own more than 2 hectares of Australian land.



Steven Armstrong

Stable Population Party

The biggest issues for voters in my electorate are the decline in quality of life due to extreme population growth. We want a better not bigger Australia. A stable population will relieve overstretched infrastructure including hospitals, schools, roads and public transport. Ease cost of living pressures including housing, energy, water and transport. Protect our environment including food, water & energy resources, native bushland and animal habitats.

Population is not a single issue, it is the everything issue. We won’t resolve any of Australia’s major problems until we first resolve the everything issue.

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