THE State Opposition has warned job cuts announced by the State Government last week will have a big impact on public services in the Wimmera.

Premier Ted Baillieu and Treasurer Kim Wells announced just before 5pm on Friday where 3615 jobs would be cut in the Victorian public service during the next two years.

Major losses will be from Education and Early Childhood Development, 400 jobs; Human Services, 500; Justice, 480; Primary Industries, 200; Sustainability and Environment, 400; Victoria Police, 350; and VicRoads, 450.

Mr Baillieu said the cuts, part of a Sustainable Government Initiative, did not apply to frontline service delivery roles and there were exemptions for specialist support staff.

Member for Western Victoria Jaala Pulford said the Wimmera needed more public services, not less.

“Any job taken from a department puts more pressure on frontline services,” she said. “These cuts will only hurt the Wimmera and force more people into unemployment.”

Member for Lowan Hugh Delahunty said in his sport, recreation and veterans affairs portfolios, there would be ‘very, very few’ cuts in the Wimmera.

Mr Delahunty’s areas are part of the Department of Planning and Community Development, which will have 140 job losses across the state. He said it was too early to specify how many Wimmera jobs would be lost in the department.

“The implementation plans are still being developed with departmental secretaries and only a couple of them have been signed at this stage,” he said.

“We have not finalised ours.”

The Community and Public Sector Union has condemned the job cuts.

Victorian branch secretary Karen Batt said the job losses would have a widespread effect on services across all government agencies.

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