Taylor weighs in on jobs issue with 'buy local' idea

THERE is no point training Electrolux workers for new jobs that do not exist, says Orange councillor Glenn Taylor, who believes the answer to the problem is a buy local campaign. 

Cr Taylor slammed the state and federal governments.

He said both had neglected Orange when it came to delivering a financial stimulus package, which would fund projects like a buy local campaign, while other areas across Australia facing job losses have received millions in funding.

“It’s absolutely disgraceful, it’s been three months since Electrolux’s announcement,” Cr  Taylor said.

“News like this, the danger is that people lose confidence, they stop spending.

“It’s great our local members are helping them with training, but we need cash, we need cash to boost the economy.”

Member for Calare John Cobb and Member for Orange Andrew Gee declined to be interviewed on the prospects of a stimulus package for Orange.

In a statement, a spokeswoman for Mr Cobb dismissed “calls for funding”, and said it would not be a long-term strategy.

Mr Gee said he had requested a “broader package”, in a statement, but the timing of any decision was outside his control.

He dismissed Cr Taylor as a Labor party member “trying to put the slipper into the NSW Government”.

Cr Taylor said a buy local campaign could give businesses the confidence they need to put on staff.

He appreciated buying local could be more expensive, but the gains would be far greater.

Small businesses would prosper, put on staff, more staff meant more money and the effect would be cyclic and exponential, he said. 

“Out of all the three tiers of government, it’s Orange City Council who have come up with tangible cash,” he said. 

“It can’t be just up to Orange City Council.”

Cr Taylor could not say how a buy local campaign would be rolled out, but said government funding could hire an expert. 

He floated the buy local campaign at Tuesday night’s council meeting.

General manager Garry Styles said the council had not considered a campaign as part of its jobs investment strategy, but the idea had merit. 

The council is yet to reveal details of its plan to create jobs for the city, but has hired a consultant to investigate possible avenues.

The federal government pledged  $15 million and the Victorian state government $4.5 million to help Geelong recover from the pending Ford closure.

When BlueScope Steel announced 800 job losses, the federal government gave $20 million and the state government gave $5 million.

One week after Holden said it would leave Australia the federal government pledged $60 million for South Australia. 

In Calare, 1100 jobs will go in the next 29 months.

nicole.kuter@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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