Sea Lake Mallee Rally must continue

Wednesday 1 May 2019

 

Premier Daniel Andrews is under pressure to resolve problems community groups are facing to comply with cultural heritage assessments, following the cancellation of an iconic regional event.

The Sea Lake Off Road Club was forced to cancel the 2019 Mallee Rally after they were told they would not be granted a permit unless a cultural heritage assessment was carried out.

The community group was told in February, just months out from the June event, that the Andrews Government had refused to offer assistance to help the community group comply with the order.

It left them with no choice but to cancel the 2019 event, despite it running successfully for 47 years.

But asked by Leader of The Nationals Peter Walsh in Parliament this week to explain the decision, Premier Daniel Andrews would only say he would look into the matter.

He then claimed: “officers of my department or the relevant department are always happy to work through those issues”.

Traditional owners and the Sea Lake Off Road Club continue to work together to meet cultural heritage requirements, but despite their hard work, they’ve been abandoned by the Andrews Labor Government.

Comment attributable to Leader of The Nationals Peter Walsh

Competitors and spectators travel from across the nation to Sea Lake each year for the event, generating a massive boost for the local economy. It’s a huge blow for this event to be cancelled this year.

Cultural heritage assessments follow a complex process and cost tens of thousands to deliver, which is leaving the future of events run by our volunteer-run community groups at risk.

Daniel Andrews must do more to support our community groups to make sure we don’t see more iconic events forced to cancel.

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