Born, like many an East Gippslander, at Bairnsdale Hospital, Tim Bull grew up in and around Metung and is currently the Member for Gippsland East, a seat he won at the November 2010 state election.
Mr. Bull was gracious enough to share his thoughts with The Gippslander recently, much appreciated during this busy time for all MP’s. I asked about his earliest memories and images of Gippsland life; “Growing up at Metung” he says “where my grandfather, father and uncles ran Bull’s Cruisers. Plenty of swimming, prawning and floundering and working on the boats and fuel jetty. I was lucky to have such an upbringing with five older brothers and an older sister”. Tim attended Metung Primary School, which he recalls only having a total of seven students at the time and Nagle College.
As seems to be par for the course with Gippsland MP’s, Tim was also heavily involved in various sporting groups and activities over the years “I played cricket as a young fella for Lakes Entrance and Metung/ Swan Reach and have been at St. Mary’s for the past 33 years. I played footy for Swan Reach as a junior, then most of my football was at Bairnsdale before Captain/Coaching Lucknow and coaching Lakes Entrance.”
I asked what Mr. Bull felt were the most challenging issues for Gippsland residents currently; “Employment would be the biggest, with Hazelwood closing and uncertainty over the Heyfield Mill and Murray Goulburn at Maffra. The Government should have fought harder for a stated closure of Hazelwood to lessen the impact on the community. If I was to say another issue, it would be community safety. Crime is rising and people want to feel safe in their own homes and send their kids away for education or work trusting that they will be safe”.
I also asked what Mr. Bull felt were the most challenging issues facing MP’s currently; “The two local issues for me that are the most raised, by a big margin, are roads and jobs. People want safe roads to drive on and jobs for their family members. If I was to add a third, it would be community safety and a frustration with our soft approach on crime.”
Tim Bull has achieved a surprising amount during his time as member for Gippsland East. The Gippslander asked Mr. Bull which achievments or milestones he was most proud of during his tenure; “The disability services we have been able to establish, including a new supported accommodation facility in Bairnsdale, The All-Abilities Playground and the extension of Noweyung, with the creation of the Cells Café’ social enterprise” he advises “Funding the first stage of the Macalister Irrigation District Upgrade, two new schools and numerous other infrastructure projects have also been important, but the disability services have probably made the biggest differences to families who needed help and there is nothing more important than that.”
Tim Bull seems very hopeful for what’s yet to come. “Although we have some challenges ahead in parts of our region, Gippsland is a great place to live, work and raise a family. We have important industries that really ‘kick the tin’ when it comes to our national economy, including horticulture, livestock, dairy, timber, mining, tourism, fishing and others. These are all industries we need as a nation and should be proud to have here.”