No. 4 Mem­ber for Clarence Chris Gu­lap­tis

The Daily Examiner - - CLARENCE VALLEY'S POWER 30 -

NO stranger to the Power 30 list, last year’s No. 1 Mem­ber for Clarence Chris Gu­lap­tis, proved just as ef­fec­tive in se­cur­ing more po­lit­i­cal love in the re­gion ahead of the elec­tion year.

Some of his big­gest an­nounce­ments this year in­cluded fund­ing for health and the arts.

The suc­cess­ful state fund­ing ap­pli­ca­tion by the Grafton Re­gional Gallery se­cured its fu­ture in a $7.6 mil­lion ex­ten­sion which will be­gin con­struc­tion in 2019.

Mr Gu­lap­tis also had the plea­sure of an­nounc­ing $17.4 mil­lion up­grade for the new Am­bu­la­tory Care Unit at the Grafton Base Hos­pi­tal.

More hos­pi­tal fund­ing re­mains in his sights with the po­ten­tial $268 mil­lion re­build of the tired piece of in­fra­struc­ture.

To en­sure govern­ment re­mains fo­cussed on the GBH Mr Gu­lap­tis kicked off a pe­ti­tion to en­sure the mo­men­tum isn’t lost.

He also went into bat for the en­vi­ron­ment ear­lier this year along­side Dirt­girl and while it fell on deaf Bere­jik­lian govern­ment ears, he isn’t afraid to crit­i­cise or stand up when it comes to rep­re­sent­ing his con­stituents back home.

Work on the other boons for the Clarence, the high­way up­grade and Grafton are still rolling along nicely while the new cor­rec­tional fa­cil­ity, also got un­der way this year.

The sheer size of what will be known as Aus­tralia’s largest prison is get­ting real as con­crete slabs and walls have been ap­pear­ing on the land­scape in one of the re­gion’s largest pieces of in­fra­struc­ture an­nounced by the lo­cal mem­ber last year.

After much lo­cal cam­paign­ing by lo­cals, and per­haps a nudge from com­pet­i­tive can­di­date Steve Cans­dell, Mr Gu­lap­tis came good by co-fund­ing the long-de­sired Maclean he­li­pad, se­cur­ing a fixed speed cam­era for the vil­lage of Ul­marra after a spate of truck­ing ac­ci­dents, and the de­mand for an am­bu­lance sta­tion in Iluka is se­ri­ously be­ing con­sid­ered this very mo­ment.

Ear­lier in the year Mr Gu­lap­tis also got into the ear of Deputy Premier John Bar­i­laro, among the land­scape of cam­paign pres­sure build­ing, and within six weeks of do­ing so the or­deal of the un­paid high­way sub­con­trac­tors was re­solved with more than $7 mil­lion of govern­ment money to cover their losses.

Mr Gu­lap­tis is quick to point out that although it has been very lu­cra­tive for Clarence Val­ley as far as in­fra­struc­ture projects goes, he does humbly ac­knowl­edge there are many cogs in the wheels that turn out these de­ci­sions.

There are three and half months to go un­til the New South Wales state elec­tion, and ev­ery week there seems to be a press re­lease with some good new about fund­ing for the re­gion.

The next one could be as soon as Mon­day.

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