SHEPPARTON GEARS UP FOR SPRING NATS With Spring Car Nationals just a few months away, the Greater Shepparton City Council and Shepparton Police are again throwing their support behind the event. Mayor Jenny Houlihan says that the Council and police are delighted to be working with organisers to ensure a successful and enjoyable event. “We’ve been very pleased with the behaviour of visitors to the area in recent years and we believe that the introduction of a total alcohol ban in public places over that weekend has made a difference,” says Cr Houlihan. “The Council and the police were concerned about the behaviour of a minority of people and there is no question that alcohol has played a significant part in many of the undesirable incidents that have occurred in the past. “The total alcohol ban has contributed substantially to the success of the weekend from the perspective of many people, particularly within the local community. “Shepparton is proud to host such a fantastic event that draws so many tourists to our area. “Spring Car Nationals is by far the biggest event on Shepparton’s calendar, attracting up to 30,000 people over three days, and generates over $14 million of direct economic benefit for the community. The indirect benefit is almost twice that figure.” Shepparton Police Divisional Road Safety Liaison Officer, Senior Sergeant Des Wright says that police have been working closely with event organisers and were pleased to see competitors and car enthusiasts were really well behaved last year. “The good behaviour we have seen means that police numbers will not be increased from last year,” says Senior Sergeant Wright. “However, this year the police have the power to impound vehicles which breach the new Vehicle Impoundment Legislation. “The legislation targets high speed drivers as well as disqualified drivers and ‘hoon’ drivers. “Police will be using this new legislation wisely and will only implement the legislation where it is absolutely necessary. “We do not want to see a situation where police are impounding cars just because they can – this is powerful legislation and we will be using it intelligently. “We would be delighted if this new legislation was not used at all. “As with other years our message to the public is the same – if you do the right thing and drive carefully the police won’t be a problem for you.