$500,000 for Beth Weizmann

August 8, 2019 by J-Wire Newsdesk
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Premier of Victoria, Daniel Andrews visited Melbourne’s Beth Weizmann Jewish Community Centre together with the newly elected Federal Member for Macnamara Josh Burns MHR, and State MPs Nina Taylor and Paul Hamer to announce further crucial funding for the major security upgrade to the Centre.

Sam Tatarka3rd left, Daniel Andrews 3rd right, Josh Burns extreme rt

Guided by the Chair of BWJCC Sam Tatarka, the Premier and the official party undertook a tour of the Centre including the Lamm Jewish Library of Australia and the new BWJCC Community Garden. He was particularly moved by the Write Your Own story section of the Library, where community members including many Holocaust survivors have documented their own personal stories.

In his remarks to the crowd who had gathered to hear the announcement Premier Andrews acknowledged that “In our proudly multi-faith state, every Victorian should be able to practice their beliefs in safety.” He reiterated that whilst there shouldn’t be a need for increased security, the reality is that there is an increasing need and his Government was prepared to do what was necessary to ensure that the need was met.

In 2014, the then Victorian Labor Opposition pledged $500,000 to the BWJCC security upgrade a promise which was met in its first budget as Government in May 2015. A further pledge of $500,000 from the State Government was made in 2018 and the total of $I million dollars was the matched by a grant from the Federal Liberal Government with another $1 million announced last September by Prime Minister Scott Morrison.

Unfortunately and despite the generosity of Government the passage of time and rising costs meant that the project was still left with a shortfall. On Wednesday morning Premier Daniel Andrews announced that his Government would deliver a further $500,000 for a total grant of $1.5million which will allow construction of the project to finally begin in January 2020. The anticipated completion of the project is in the second half of 2020.

Sam Tatarka, welcomed the additional funding from the Premier and said “Throughout his tenureDaniel Andrews and the government he leads has consistently demonstrated a deep understanding of the importance of supporting multiculturalism and the significant and historic role of the Jewish community in the life of our state. We look forward to finally bringing this project to fruition in the first half of next year and making our wonderful community centre safer to the hundreds who work here and the thousands of community members who visit over the course of a year”.

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