• Held by: Jude Perera (ALP)
  • Since: 2002
  • Swing at 2010 election: -9.4 per cent
  • Redistribution details: Cranbourne lost Carrum Downs, Sandhurst, Skye, Frankston North and Langwarrin and gained parts of Cranbourne South, Devon Meadows, Cranbourne North, Lyndhurst and Lynbrook. Its margin of 1.8 per cent has been reduced to an estimated 1.1 per cent.
  • Size of electorate: 80.2 square kilometres

KEY COMMENTS: Labor’s Jude Perera, who has held the seat for 12 years, was comfortably re-elected in 2006 but narrowly held on at the 2010 election after withstanding an above average 9.4 per cent swing (a 12.6 per cent drop in the primary vote). He faces a high profile Liberal candidate in an electorate in which housing development has brought a significant influx of new, heavily mortgaged voters.

Cranbourne a heavily mortgaged claybelt conundrum

To see why the once safe ALP seat of Cranbourne has become one of Victoria’s most marginal, turn left off the South Gippsland Highway at the police station instead of continuing on to Phillip Island and the coast.

In just a few kilometres you will see thousands of new homes on brand new housing estates. They’re not quite gated communities but might be the next best thing, each ready to accept increasing numbers of heavily mortgaged young families and first home buyers.

The City of Casey, which covers much of the outer south eastern “clay belt” electorate, estimates its fast-growing population at just over 280,000 and predicts it could reach nearly 460,000 in little more than two decades.

> Read the full electorate profile here

Candidate profiles


Jude Perera remains endebted to a close relative who flew out from Sri Lanka when he was seriously ill a few years ago. The Labor MP’s cousin Lalitha agreed to be a donor after he… read more


City of Casey Mayor Geoff Ablett seemed set to take the fast-growing outer south eastern seat of Cranbourne where he failed narrowly as Liberal candidate at the last state election. But it remains to be seen…
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Cranbourne news

Super expensive golf course a development that might never tee off

EXCLUSIVE Caitlin Caldwell and Christine Brennan. A $10 billion union-backed industry superannuation fund has come under fire from Labor MPs and locals for paying more than two times the going price for a golf course bordering coveted green wedge land before seeking planning permission or rezoning for redevelopment. Industry Super Property Trust, the nation’s largest unlisted property fund manager whose 35 super fund members include representatives from the controversial building union CFMEU, paid $125 million for the Kingswood Golf Course that was valued at $52 million. ‘The price paid for the Kingswood Golf Club land seems very high, considering the land has not been rezoned and the claim by Kingston Council that no rezoning application has been received or considered,’ says Labor shadow state attorney general Martin Pakula, who previously described the deal as ‘extraordinary’. Shadow Planning Minister Brian Tee is warning that even if the City of Kingston votes to rezone the land he won’t ‘simply rubber stamp such a recommendation’ if elected this week. Local members of parliament have also questioned how the industry fund can be confident about approval for rezoning before applying and whether it has any idea about how many dwelling might be allowed on site, which will determine the profitability of the deal. ISPT declined to comment about purchasing the land, which is about 22 kilometres south-east of Melbourne, bordering hotly contested green wedge land and Dingley Village. But the fund has a history of buying golf courses and other sporting venues for residential redevelopment. The lower valuation for the purchase is based on it remaining a golf course with the higher believed... read more

Grabbing marginal’s green wedge for amusement park

By Caitlin Caldwell, Catherine Brennan and Jared Brown. A 43-hectare amusement park is being considered by Chinese developers on land zoned “green wedge” near Dandenong, according to the local mayor, sparking concerns about development of the environmentally sensitive land. The $5.3 million purchase of the site in August by Meixin Australia has alarmed environmentalists, who want to turn development of Melbourne’s “green wedges” – land put aside in 1971 by premier Sir Rupert Hamer for farming and open space – into a state election issue. Meixin Australia, registered by two Chinese-born residents in July just before the land purchase was made, could not be reached for comment. But Dandenong mayor Jim Memeti, who was among those on a recent council trade trip to China, has indicated the company planned to turn the land into a theme park. Cr Memeti did not return calls, but was quoted last month in a local paper floating the idea. Fellow councillor Roz Blades said the council was expecting a report on the proposal soon. But opponents of the green wedge land being used for a theme park or other uses warned it set a dangerous precedent. “The green wedge is being sold to the development wolves,” claimed Alex Breskin, a Greens candidate for the seat of the Mordialloc, which requires a 1.5 per cent swing to Labor to unseat the Liberal Party’s Lorraine Wreford. Local residents and campaigners have called on all parties to reinforce their commitment to protecting the south-eastern green wedge, which covers about 93 square kilometres across the four marginal electorates of Frankston, Carrum, Mordialloc and Cranbourne. Julia Hamer, daughter... read more