Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Piccoli landslide

Nationals select Deputy Leader of the NSW Nationals Adrian Piccoli as Murray candidate.

May 27, 2014 3:05am

Deputy Leader of the NSW Nationals Adrian Piccoli is the National Party’s candidate for the electorate of Murray at next year’s state election.

Mr Piccoli won the pre-selection vote in Hay on Saturday, which was decided by Nationals members.

Coordinated by Deniliquin’s Joan Douglas, 120 people attended the meeting and 109 voted.

Mr Piccoli said official voting divisions will not be released, but that he received ‘‘about 70 per cent of the votes’’.

Unsuccessful were Wakool’s David Landini and Helen Dalton from Griffith.

Mr Piccoli was elected to the NSW Parliament as the Member for Murrumbidgee in 1999.

Murrumbidgee was abolished in last year’s electoral redistribution.

It comes to effect at the March 2015 election, and the majority of Murrumbidgee’s electors now fall within the new Murray electorate.

The bottom half of Murray-Darling, represented by The Nationals’ John Williams, will also move into Murray.

‘‘I am very much looking forward to representing the people of Murray if I am elected as their representative in March next year,’’ Mr Piccoli said.

‘‘I would like to thank all the members of The Nationals who came to Hay to show their support for the work that the NSW government is doing in our regional communities.

‘‘I would also like to thank the other preselection candidates David Landini and Helen Dalton for the good nature in which this democratic process was conducted.’’

Looking ahead to next year’s election, Mr Piccoli said The Nationals has a proven track record of supporting regional communities.

‘‘We’ve invested more than $1 billion in rebuilding regional hospitals, $13 billion into regional infrastructure, more than $1 billion to make regional roads safer and delivered more than 2000 new nurses, police officers and teachers to regional New South Wales.

‘‘As Minister for Education I have also led the charge to deliver a fairer deal for students in regional New South Wales. The right to a quality education should never be dependent upon where a child lives.

‘‘This is why the Nationals & Liberal government has implemented a new model for school funding which has delivered a significant increase in funding for schools across the Murray electorate.

‘‘This includes $226,000 more for Leeton High School, $117,000 for Hillston Public School, $166,000 for Wade High School in Griffith, $97,000 for Deniliquin High School and $87,000 for Dareton High School.

‘‘If I am elected as the Member for Murray next year, this good work will continue for communities right across the electorate from Griffith to Hay, Deniliquin to Leeton and everywhere in between.’’

Chairman of the NSW Nationals Niall Blair congratulated Mr Piccoli on his resounding endorsement as The Nationals’ candidate for Murray and his great work as the Member for Murrumbidgee.

‘‘The preselection was an opportunity for all financial members of six months standing in the new electorate of Murray to cast their vote for their preferred candidate,’’ Mr Blair said.

‘‘Adrian’s overwhelming endorsement today is a reflection of the results he has delivered to the community since 1999 and his groundbreaking work as Minister for Education.

‘‘Adrian is a hard working local Member of Parliament and he is constantly fighting for the interests of the communities that he represents.

‘‘I have no doubt that this work will continue if he becomes the Member for Murray next March.’’

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