Kevin & Puffing Billy !!

 
  dthead Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Noted Kevin Rudd was on PBR, or visited the Railway !!

Regards,
David Head

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  QSB6.7 Chief Train Controller

Location: Going off the rails on a crazy train.
Photo op.

Wonder if her is going to throw more $$$ at it now?
  Barrington Womble Photo Nazi

Location: Banned
$3.125 Million if he gets in apparently.

It annoys me greatly that politicians don't even think to go beyond Suburban Melbourne.
I am sure that both the VGR, and DSCR combined would have far greater need/use for that amount of money than PBR would.
  QSB6.7 Chief Train Controller

Location: Going off the rails on a crazy train.
It is all about the votes.  Joe public are not as aware of the other groups out there compared to PB.
  awsgc24 Minister for Railways

Location: Sydney
It is all about the votes.  Joe public are not as aware of the other groups out there compared to PB.
QSB6.7

Silly Billy meets Puffing Billy.
  Barrington Womble Photo Nazi

Location: Banned
Silly Billy meets Puffing Billy.
awsgc24
Oh go away.

If you can't post something which is at least half sensible, don't post anything at all.
  D3621 Locomotive Driver

Location: Castlemaine Vic
$3.125 Million if he gets in apparently.

It annoys me greatly that politicians don't even think to go beyond Suburban Melbourne.
I am sure that both the VGR, and DSCR combined would have far greater need/use for that amount of money than PBR would.
Barrington Womble
VGR, DSCR and the SGR should be all candidates for the money $1 million each they will all be spewing with that amount of money. I thought that Puffing Billy got a nice amount of money a year or two back? For a tourist railway that probably is making more money than the rest nearly combined why do they need all the money?

That's the problem with ALL politicians they dont give a stuff about regional Victoria all together. Its all Melbourne Geelong, Bendigo and Ballarat in their liking. Hell maybe not even Bendigo Ballarat either just Melbourne and Geelong.
  locojoe67 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Gen X purgatory/urban Joh-land
Geelong will get lots of attention for the next three years with a certain factory to close.

The pork has begun preparing for take-off:
http://www.railpage.com.au/news/article-12996/
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
VGR, DSCR and the SGR should be all candidates for the money $1 million each they will all be spewing with that amount of money. I thought that Puffing Billy got a nice amount of money a year or two back? For a tourist railway that probably is making more money than the rest nearly combined why do they need all the money?

That's the problem with ALL politicians they dont give a stuff about regional Victoria all together. Its all Melbourne Geelong, Bendigo and Ballarat in their liking. Hell maybe not even Bendigo Ballarat either just Melbourne and Geelong.
D3621

Not wanting to get into discussions of which TR is more worthy of money etc. (that's another whole discussion) but perhaps worth highlighting the process.

Each TR goes through a life cycle where the first phase is a semi organised effort in putting a group together. Skills matrix is not great but enthusiasm is high. Restoration efforts are rather haphazard and people are keen on just making it look like things are happening.

Second phase is a more organised structure whereby dedicated teams / branches are formed but the majority of work is physical / mechanical. e.g. re-sleepering, restoring carriages, needle-gunning loco frames, painting buildings. Trains often run but fares usually just cover the costs of the jobs described.

Third phase is the realisation that future progress won't come from just fares and ice cream sales and a concerted effort in securing funding / resources via work for the dole programs, lobbying for government funding etc. is just as important as replacing sleeper plates. In fact the guys putting together funding application submissions are often doing more important work than those on the track gang or in the workshops. They may spend hours of time in a voluntary capacity without even setting foot on the railway.

By virtue of being about the oldest TR, PBR has just passed through those phases earlier which is partly why their is perceived success with recent funding announcements. The government doesn't just place 2 million in an envelope and say "who should I give this to" - it happens because of concerted campaigns directed at the politicians.

Not saying that other TR's aren't doing this now but PBR has just had the jump realising the importance of all this and have probably developed a tighter network of contacts.

Having said that, Dandenong Ranges is also a fairly marginal seat. Cough *buying votes *cough...
  D3621 Locomotive Driver

Location: Castlemaine Vic
All tourist railways deserve the money. Like I said earlier; politicians are looking only at suburban Melbourne and they are not giving a stuff about regional Victoria. But mind you that happens alot.

It's a great thing that tourist railways are getting money for what they are doing don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to say that PBR don’t need the money. All tourist railways need government funding in order to keep up maintenance etc, but PBR did get a large amount of money a year or two back in the form of around $2 million from memory.

Its a good thing that PBR is getting funding but what about regional Victoria? The only fact that they are not getting the funds is because Politicians focus on the large cities in order to win the majority of votes. Hell, is an election year.

Like you Ballast_Plough I'm not trying to get into a debate over who should get what. But politicians need to look out of the square into regional Victoria not just keep their eyes on Melbourne.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
But the point I'm making is that the government doesn't come to the railways asking if they want money - the railway must go to the government! I'm not saying that other railways aren't out there putting there hand up but their expertise and experience is probably not quite matched to PB just yet. At the end of the day, if the government only get hounded by 1 railway for money, perhaps they assume that the others don't need it??
  G41 Chief Commissioner

Location: Footplate of any K class
But the point I'm making is that the government doesn't come to the railways asking if they want money - the railway must go to the government! I'm not saying that other railways aren't out there putting there hand up but their expertise and experience is probably not quite matched to PB just yet. At the end of the day, if the government only get hounded by 1 railway for money, perhaps they assume that the others don't need it??
Ballast_Plough

Ballast_Plough is right.

Just look at the recent success for government funding the Yarra Valley Railway got! It's not about the government just handing out money, as much as I'd like it to be. Tourist sectors really need to push for the funding.

I'm not biased towards any group, I'm a member/volunteer of both PBR and VGR, I just understand where Ballast_Plough is coming from.
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
But the point I'm making is that the government doesn't come to the railways asking if they want money - the railway must go to the government! I'm not saying that other railways aren't out there putting there hand up but their expertise and experience is probably not quite matched to PB just yet. At the end of the day, if the government only get hounded by 1 railway for money, perhaps they assume that the others don't need it??
Ballast_Plough

First off, this is my personal opinion only.

I'm sure the other railways are not simply expecting Kevin to turn up with a bag of cash. I know that most are engaged in signficiant amounts of political lobbying, grant applications, etc... Every once in a while, a group will get lucky where the political circumstances align with their application and they get funding.

I've got no problem with Puffing Billy getting this money (although the way things are going, that isn't necessarily going to happen). They aren't just a regional tourist railway, they are one of the main tourist attractions in the state and still a significant attraction at a national level.

However, if you take Puffing Billy out of the equation, what I would like to see is a fairer distribution of funding across the other tourist railways rather than select groups getting big handouts purely due to the way the political wind blows. As part of this, I think there should also be better oversight in how funding is spent and measures in place to prevent any one group getting significantly greater amounts of funding than others.
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
And he turned up over 40 minutes late, so PB had to wait for him. Apparently quite a few people were pissed off about that.
  sthyer Deputy Commissioner

However, if you take Puffing Billy out of the equation, what I would like to see is a fairer distribution of funding across the other tourist railways rather than select groups getting big handouts purely due to the way the political wind blows. As part of this, I think there should also be better oversight in how funding is spent and measures in place to prevent any one group getting significantly greater amounts of funding than others.
VRfan
Trouble with your plan is that it assumes that the pot of money that TR's receive money from is one big pot. It's not. Funding comes from different Gov't Departments at both state and federal level, and not forgetting local, so there is no legislative ability to co-ordinate all these funding bodies into one department who could then hand out the cash.

Hypothetically, even if all these funds were put into one pot and distributed on an equitable basis year by year, each funding grant would be so small as to achieve very little. It's a fact that funding bodies like to be able to tie a ribbon to something, thus favour a tangible project they can 'open'. If the funding was small, year by year, then there would be a string of 'shed repaintings' or 'platform resurfacing' getting the funding. Big projects requiring the equivalent of 5-10 years worth of funding, wouldn't get funded.

Also, TR's aren't fighting each other for funding, they're fighting many other community, heritage, regional development or tourism projects of all shapes and sizes. If they're up to the task and persistant, funding may eventually come their way, thus their big plans (extension to Castlemaine, to yarra Glen, to Gembrook, rebuild to Bullarto, building of sheds etc etc) can eventually be a reality. TR's sharing knowledge of what it takes to get the big funding grants is beneficial to the whole industry, they're not cutting their own throats by sharing secrets. It's why there's one TR that's recently been successful at a large grant speaking at the ATR Victoria's AGM, they're happy to share and see others succeed.

As for being in a marginal seat and getting funding, it's a political reality and a TR that doesn't make hay while the sun shines is foolish. Every other community organisation in the marginal seat will be putting their hand up for dollars, TR's don't need to be shy.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Stuart elaborates well on a point I made a few months ago. On RP we tend to look at everything purely from a rail perspective and that all TR's seem to exist solely in a category by themselves. If PBR viewed itself in the tourism caregory rather than Heritage Rail, it could be argued that it's been the poorer cousin compared to Sovereign Hill, Penguins, Flagstaff Hill, etc.

At the end of the day though, it could be all a moot point. Rudd would be foolish to think re-election is guaranteed so maybe his promises are bordering on flippant knowing that chances are low that he'll have to come through with it. The pledge though might garner him some support and make the loss not such a landslide.
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
Trouble with your plan is that it assumes that the pot of money that TR's receive money from is one big pot. It's not. Funding comes from different Gov't Departments at both state and federal level, and not forgetting local, so there is no legislative ability to co-ordinate all these funding bodies into one department who could then hand out the cash.
sthyer

I think you're mistaking a wish with a plan. I know the reality of the situation and it won't change. It doesn't mean that I like the way funding is handed out.

The fact remains that some groups have got millions of dollars with relatively little to show for it (nationally, Beudesert Rail has to be the biggest failure of rail preservation after massive political spending), while other groups tick all the boxes but get very little in terms of government funding.
  Boss Chief Commissioner

Location: Caulfield Line
And he turned up over 40 minutes late, so PB had to wait for him. Apparently quite a few people were pissed off about that.
TheBlacksmith
He should be used to that by now.
  D3621 Locomotive Driver

Location: Castlemaine Vic
At the end of the day though, it could be all a moot point. Rudd would be foolish to think re-election is guaranteed so maybe his promises are bordering on flippant knowing that chances are low that he'll have to come through with it. The pledge though might garner him some support and make the loss not such a landslide.
Ballast_Plough
Definitely i agree with that. Rudd is very very hopeful that he will get re-elected and he is making promises in order to get votes. It will get some votes in the Dandenong region and he is trying to get some extra support by announcing this.

I didn't know PBR saw themselves in the tourism category i was under the impression that it was heritage rail? After all it is a tourist railway.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
My point though is that labels can be misleading. The railway (like other TR's) don't belong to categories that are mutually exclusive. You can be in Heritage rail and Tourism category at the same time. In fact, PB is probably considered more in the tourism category from a functional perspective. e.g. When the big cruise ships hit Melbourne for a day, the organisers look for about 6 tourist attraction day trips for the passengers rather than 6 tourist railways. Various tourism websites also highlight the railway in amongst the likes of Soverign Hill, Penguins, etc.
  duttonbay Minister for Railways

D3621 - I guess you're not a member of PBR. If you read Narrow Gauge you will see that they see themselves as very much a tourist attraction - after all that's where the bulk of their business comes from.  

Notwithstanding Rudd's offer, which is unlikely to happen, the reality for pollies is to make their grants, etc, visible to most people. PBR runs many more trains in a week than any other tourist railway, and at a guess, carries at least an order of magnitude (probably two orders) more passengers than any other.  So even if YVR, DSCR, BPR, VGR or WGR have fabulous cases for grants, the pollies will be looking at the numbers of people who would get a benefit.
  Piston Train Controller

And he turned up over 40 minutes late, so PB had to wait for him. Apparently quite a few people were pissed off about that.
TheBlacksmith
It took the minders 40 minutes to convince him the Garratt he was to see there was G42 and not Peter.

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