People power is being enlisted to overturn a VicRoads decision to discontinue driving tests and vehicle checks in Sunshine.
A rally has been organised for noon on Friday, May 12, outside VicRoad’s customer service centre and regional office.
And a Brimbank councillor is spearheading a council-led push to have the services retained.
Rally organiser Peter Thomson said that people power was needed to overturn this “kick in the guts to the struggling residents of Brimbank”.
Early next year VicRoads will shift its existing north-west metropolitan office, which fronts Harvester Road, to Clarke Street, Sunshine.
Star Weekly revealed in October last year that the move would herald the end of driving tests and vehicle checks in Sunshine because VicRoads deems them “not a dominant transaction in Sunshine”.
The closest VicRoads offices to offer those services are Melton, Hoppers Crossing, Werribee, Sunbury or Broadmeadows.
“To have people go to Melton, Broadmeadows or Werribee is beyond a joke,” Mr Thomson says. “People with disabilities are going to find it even harder.
“This will lead to job losses as driving schools will probably move out of the area closer to other licence-testing venues.”
Councillor Bruce Lancashire is behind a council push to keep the services in Sunshine.
“If residents of Brimbank need to do a driving test or get their driving licence, they’ll have to travel all the way to Werribee, Melton, Sunbury or Broadmeadows,” he said.
“That is a long way to go for a service that used to be on their doorstep previously.”
Brimbank council plans to write to local members of State Parliament, Roads and Road Safety Minister Luke Donellan and VicRoads chief executive John Merritt, asking for the services to be retained in Sunshine.
A VicRoads spokeswoman said last week the roads authority was “confident” customers would not be disadvantaged by the changes.
August 9, 2016: VicRoads plan eases parking woes in Sunshine
March 28, 2016: Sunshine VicRoads office to take 90 car spaces