Independent.
And Proud of it.

Since 2018, Ali Cupper has been the proud Independent Member for Mildura – a dynamic slice of Victoria full of diverse people, places and ideas.

With her roots planted firmly in the magnificent region she now proudly represents, Ali aims to fight for all people in her electorate – from the banks of the Mighty Murray River, to the proud farmers of the Millewa and Mallee.

In December 2020, Ali entered into a Coalition Agreement with proven legislator Fiona Patten MP to form the Reason Coalition – giving Team AC a larger voice to advocate for issues within the Mildura electorate, while remaining fiercely independent and unbound by party politics.

NEED TO GET IN TOUCH URGENTLY?

rategate heading

It is an economic SCANDAL that a ratepayer in Mildura, with a modest house, should have to pay TWICE THE RATES of the owner of a million-dollar mansion in Geelong.

  Join the campaign to fix regional rates FOR GOOD.

THE HIT LIST

FIND GRANTS

I am excited to partner with GrantGuru to provide the ‘Mildura Electorate Grant Finder’ to all community groups, businesses and not-for-profits. This site provides a comprehensive list of grant and funding opportunities available to you.

This free service will ensure you never miss a grant opportunity again. Register to receive emailed alerts for new grants, save your favourites and access tips to help you apply.

See our Top Tips and Grants Explained for further advice.

Kind regards,

Ali Cupper MP
Independent Member for Mildura

Ali Cupper MP has no involvement or influence with the decision of who receives funding. This service is provided in partnership with GrantGuru, an independent source of Australian grant information without influence.

Of course we’re on Facebook! Check out the latest from Team AC, Press Releases, and daily updates.

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons

BEHIND THE SCENES WITH TEAM AC: Risk, review, reset.
.
You can’t break new ground without taking risks. Sometimes your risks are rewarded. Other times you fall flat on your face. I’ve experienced both in my 12 years of politics.
.
But after every setback or stuff up or poor judgement call, as I’ve lifted my face from the dust and rubbed my eyes open, I’ve looked up to see that I’ve moved the ball forward.
.
Through Council elections, State elections and the long, painstaking process of modernising our local political culture, it’s been a case of two steps forward, one step back. It’s like a roller coaster with ups and downs, but always forward momentum.
.
That’s my knack.
.
The alternative is to play it safe. And that was our previous approach to State politics. For more than a decade we had played it safe with an old-school adversarial party that was increasingly out of touch, and substituted smear, slander and scare tactics for a modern policy agenda.
.
And it was getting us nowhere.
.
We were hopelessly stuck in political irrelevance. The numbers didn’t lie. Not just on the funding scoreboard, but in the big symbols of having Victoria’s only privatised public Hospital and being the only major regional city in Australia without a passenger train.
.
But in just 2.5 years, we’ve changed the game. And my opponents HATE it. It makes their blood curdle. Because it has shown them up. It has exposed their weaknesses. It has shone a bright light on the limitations of their zero-sum adversarial game, and the rigid, locked-in nature of their coalition agreement.
.
By contrast, independent politics is inherently collaborative. It’s also nimble and fluid. And it’s bloody effective.
.
Since November 2018, collaborative politics has brought our hospital back. We’ve secured around $230 million in investment for roads, schools, TAFE, public housing and business support. We are opening exciting new frontiers for our farmers in industrial hemp, securing big dollars in drought relief, adding hundreds of thousands of dollars of value to local blockies’ income and retirement funds through planning amendments in the MOIA and we’ve negotiated important concessions in water trading rules and a moratorium on new plantings to help our smaller farmers compete in a crowded water market.
.
We’re setting ourselves up for the future.
.
None of that would have been possible without collaboration. And collaboration is what I do.
.
Despite leaving the party a decade ago, I’ve maintained a close and respectful working relationship with the ALP. In 2013 and 2016 I campaigned with the Liberal Party in support of their excellent candidate, Chris Crewther. When our social fabric was being torn apart in 2020 by the NSW hard border closures, I collaborated with Fishers and Shooters dynamo, Helen Dalton. For the last five months I’ve collaborated with Victoria’s most effective policy negotiator and balance of power politician, Fiona Patten, on regional rate reform. During the draconian SA hard border closures, I reached out to my western border neighbour, a National Party MP, to propose a joint pitch to the South Australian Government for a more proportionate approach to cross-border towns like Murrayville. She declined. Can’t say I didn’t try ...
.
I work with everyone and I’m beholden to no-one. Through it all I’ve been an independent free agent, always pursuing new and creative ways to maximise the power and influence of our region.
.
By joining a coalition for regional rate reform, I went out on a limb, but as bruised as I felt on Thursday night, I still believe it was worth a try.
.
We didn’t lose anything and we gained a significant foothold in our statewide campaign to fix the scandalous divide between rural/regional and metro rates. That's a cause worth fighting for ...
.
Our residents, business owners and farmers are paying up to ten times the rates of their metro counterparts. Tell me how that’s fair? Would ratepayers have preferred I didn’t go out on a limb?
.
Last week Coalition Leader Michael O’Brien said city ratepayers shouldn’t have to help us out, shouldn’t have pay a subsidy for their rural and regional cousins who are fighting against the odds, in a rate capping environment, to maintain services without going insolvent. Gee thanks Michael.
.
Bloody hell, at least I’m trying.
.
Some elements of our coalition worked. Others didn’t. In the end it was the party political games of the National Party and Reason that were the deal-breaker for me. I don’t have time for that and neither does my community. Risk. Review. Reset. It’s the secret to my - and our - success.
.
Am I perfect?
No.
.
Do I have bad days?
Yes.
.
Do my opponents have bad days?
Yes. But they just don’t admit it.
.
For 12 years I’ve been the comeback kid. Through triumphs and setbacks, I’ve held my ground. I’ve worked hard and delivered results. My opponents can take their best shot. I can handle it. I’m a fifth generation Mallee girl. I come from tough stock. And I have a job to do. Not every quarter goes perfectly, but I have 18 months to go.
.
Head up. Eyes forward. Play on.
.
AC.
... See MoreSee Less

BEHIND THE SCENES WITH TEAM AC: Risk, review, reset.
.
You can’t break new ground without taking risks. Sometimes your risks are rewarded. Other times you fall flat on your face. I’ve experienced both in my 12 years of politics.
.
But after every setback or stuff up or poor judgement call, as I’ve lifted my face from the dust and rubbed my eyes open, I’ve looked up to see that I’ve moved the ball forward. 
.
Through Council elections, State elections and the long, painstaking process of modernising our local political culture, it’s been a case of two steps forward, one step back. It’s like a roller coaster with ups and downs, but always forward momentum. 
.
That’s my knack. 
.
The alternative is to play it safe. And that was our previous approach to State politics. For more than a decade we had played it safe with an old-school adversarial party that was increasingly out of touch, and substituted smear, slander and scare tactics for a modern policy agenda. 
.
And it was getting us nowhere. 
.
We were hopelessly stuck in political irrelevance. The numbers didn’t lie. Not just on the funding scoreboard, but in the big symbols of having Victoria’s only privatised public Hospital and being the only major regional city in Australia without a passenger train.
.
But in just 2.5 years, we’ve changed the game. And my opponents HATE it. It makes their blood curdle. Because it has shown them up. It has exposed their weaknesses. It has shone a bright light on the limitations of their zero-sum adversarial game, and the rigid, locked-in nature of their coalition agreement. 
.
By contrast, independent politics is inherently collaborative. It’s also nimble and fluid. And it’s bloody effective. 
.
Since November 2018, collaborative politics has brought our hospital back. We’ve secured around $230 million in investment for roads, schools, TAFE, public housing and business support. We are opening exciting new frontiers for our farmers in industrial hemp, securing big dollars in drought relief, adding hundreds of thousands of dollars of value to local blockies’ income and retirement funds through planning amendments in the MOIA and we’ve negotiated important concessions in water trading rules and a moratorium on new plantings to help our smaller farmers compete in a crowded water market.
.
We’re setting ourselves up for the future.
.
None of that would have been possible without collaboration. And collaboration is what I do.
.
Despite leaving the party a decade ago, I’ve maintained a close and respectful working relationship with the ALP. In 2013 and 2016 I campaigned with the Liberal Party in support of their excellent candidate, Chris Crewther. When our social fabric was being torn apart in 2020 by the NSW hard border closures, I collaborated with Fishers and Shooters dynamo, Helen Dalton. For the last five months I’ve collaborated with Victoria’s most effective policy negotiator and balance of power politician, Fiona Patten, on regional rate reform. During the draconian SA hard border closures, I reached out to my western border neighbour, a National Party MP, to propose a joint pitch to the South Australian Government for a more proportionate approach to cross-border towns like Murrayville. She declined. Can’t say I didn’t try ...
.
I work with everyone and I’m beholden to no-one. Through it all I’ve been an independent free agent, always pursuing new and creative ways to maximise the power and influence of our region.
.
By joining a coalition for regional rate reform, I went out on a limb, but as bruised as I felt on Thursday night, I still believe it was worth a try. 
.
We didn’t lose anything and we gained a significant foothold in our statewide campaign to fix the scandalous divide between rural/regional and metro rates. Thats a cause worth fighting for ...
.
Our residents, business owners and farmers are paying up to ten times the rates of their metro counterparts. Tell me how that’s fair? Would ratepayers have preferred I didn’t go out on a limb?
.
Last week Coalition Leader Michael O’Brien said city ratepayers shouldn’t have to help us out, shouldn’t have pay a subsidy for their rural and regional cousins who are fighting against the odds, in a rate capping environment, to maintain services without going insolvent. Gee thanks Michael. 
.
Bloody hell, at least I’m trying.
.
Some elements of our coalition worked. Others didn’t. In the end it was the party political games of the National Party and Reason that were the deal-breaker for me. I don’t have time for that and neither does my community. Risk. Review. Reset. It’s the secret to my - and our - success.
.
Am I perfect? 
No. 
.
Do I have bad days? 
Yes. 
.
Do my opponents have bad days?
Yes. But they just don’t admit it. 
.
For 12 years I’ve been the comeback kid. Through triumphs and setbacks, I’ve held my ground. I’ve worked hard and delivered results. My opponents can take their best shot. I can handle it. I’m a fifth generation Mallee girl. I come from tough stock. And I have a job to do. Not every quarter goes perfectly, but I have 18 months to go. 
.
Head up. Eyes forward. Play on.
.
AC.

Comment on Facebook

Keep it up , and stick it up'm. I have received National Party propaganda via Facebook and mail box putting you down. These people are old money and keeping it that way. Love your work and you are doing a great job. Don't let them get you down. There's something rotten behind party politics. Love your work👍

There is no better trait in a person then that of someone who is good enough to realise a mistake and be good enough to fix it. Well done Ali. We are all human and none of us are perfect, but a person who makes a change for the better, especially someone in your position, I think could only be described as someone setting a good example of a honest leader. Cheers Ali.

Keep strong Ali ... you are doing a fine job.

Great piece Ali. 👏👏👏

I always enjoy your posts Ali Cupper MP - Independent for Mildura , one of the very few politicians that are always straight down the line, we always know where we stand with you and I respect your complete honesty. A rare quality these days when it comes to politics . 👍

There is one thing that this electorate can be sure of Ali is that you are willing to go out on a limb. You have been very open about this. I applaud your honesty and respect your integrity. Our very best wishes, Ron and Mary xx

I’m still hoping that you can convince the right people in Melbourne to help bring the trains back to Mildura. It would really go a long way for this area and it is long overdue.

Love your three,two worded sentences at the end!! 💕Great advice..all the best!! 🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀

A good illustration of why independents are important in our parliaments and why hacks from adversarial political parties are not the only alternative for voters.

Ali Your political actions are open and transparent, unlike most of the behind closed door deals from the major parties. Keep your integrity in the fight👍

Innovation, effort, courage. Pretty good characteristics for a political rep to have.

Thanks Ali - you are refreshing, true to your word and effective and I for one appreciate what you do for our electorate.

Great post. While we can never guarantee the result we can guarantee the effort.

Keep up the great work Ali. Thank you for all you have achieved! 🌟

Keep moving and achieving

100% Ali Cupper 👍👍 Very lucky to have you 💪💪💪💪

Onward and upward👏👏👏👏

Keep fighting for our community Malle Girl! Especially to reduce our inflated council rates! It’s killing us Battlers♥️Every time Council decides to upgrade our mall🤦‍♀️🙄🤦‍♀️Our hard earned money is wasted!!! Open it up to parking ‘n restaurants 🙏🏻

Keep on them Ali

Wow you stunning Ali in this pic 👏

Perfectly said! Playing it safe for too long reaps nothing. No risk, no rewards. 💜

Well said Ali, keep at it! We need more independents like you 👍

Totally support you..... oh and by the way you look stunning in this photo!

You go girl! 👌

I am in NSW Ali but behind you 100%!! We need more pollies with your values!

View more comments

Hey everyone,
.
I have made the decision to withdraw from the Reason Coalition.
.
The coalition with the Reason Party was, to my mind, a way of increasing the influence of the Mildura electorate in the upper house, particularly on regional rate reform, which is of critical importance to our community.
.
I was proud to stand alongside Fiona Patten who is one of the most effective policy negotiators in the Victorian Parliament. I admire Fiona and always will.
.
I entered the coalition with the best of intentions, but I am not prepared to be drawn into party politics and game playing at the expense of my values and reputation.
.
All my constituents want is hard work and results. No games. No distractions.
.
That’s what they deserve, and that’s what I’ll deliver, on my own terms.
.
AC.
... See MoreSee Less

Hey everyone,
.
I have made the decision to withdraw from the Reason Coalition. 
. 
The coalition with the Reason Party was, to my mind, a way of increasing the influence of the Mildura electorate in the upper house, particularly on regional rate reform, which is of critical importance to our community.
.
I was proud to stand alongside Fiona Patten who is one of the most effective policy negotiators in the Victorian Parliament. I admire Fiona and always will.
.
I entered the coalition with the best of intentions, but I am not prepared to be drawn into party politics and game playing at the expense of my values and reputation.
.
All my constituents want is hard work and results. No games. No distractions. 
.
That’s what they deserve, and that’s what I’ll deliver, on my own terms. 
.
AC.

Comment on Facebook

No apology to Anne or the Nats? Your alliance played the same games You have been accusing them of playing.

Lesson learnt , on wards and upwards from here 👍

A good choice Ali, it's so hard to find an honest politician & I'm glad to see we have one who represents us with honesty & dignity.

Well done Ali getting involved In other political party's Internal politics is nothing but bad news but remember you will always have my support 💯%.

I still don’t think we’ve ever had a local member fight harder for us. Maybe now, the haters will settle down and leave you alone. So much respect for you Ali 💕

Courage. Haters are going to jump on this but they can't keep attacking when you're continually putting the Mallee first and trying new and creative ways to achieve that. They can't see that forest because they're stuck at the trees!

So proud of you Ali and what you have and are achieving for our community

Well done Ali for your honesty. With you 100%

I’m sorry you had to make the decision to with draw Ali I thought it made sense . Good luck .

Well done Ali,right move,we are with you.

Well said with you 100 %

Alexsandro Bluey Garufi Well no other independent has had to deal with a pandemic as Ali has had to!! Speaking on behalf of Murrayville..I'm reasonably sure most would agree with me..the time,care, effort & patience Ali went to & put in for us was exceptional!! All Murrayville residents are familiar with the name Ali Cupper & know who she is!! That's what has changed..Ali has shown us that she is very approachable..she can't please everyone but I feel she does the best she can!! 🍀🍀

I feel like this is the right move

This is why we voted you in. You are a Independent. Focus on that. We wanted you for that reason.

Great news and very wise. You are working so hard for us but a lot of people did not agree with you joining the reason party as that’s not what we voted for. Thank you for all you do

We need more politicians like you Ali!

Ali you entered a coalition with Fiona with all best intensions for the Mildura Electorate. I know now you are stepping back for the same reason. You still have more integrity in your actions and what you fight for than we have ever had here before. Keep changing the game.

Beautiful photo Ali. Good on you for sticking to your own beliefs and agenda for the community.

A wise decision. The values of “the reason party” simply are not in line with most of the people in the Mildura electorate. I suspect that staying in a coalition with them would have greatly reduced your chances of getting re-elected. Better to concentrate on the issues and needs of the people in your seat instead.

Continue your good work Ali cupper. This region needs improvement in areas like Health care especially aged care (Hospital need a big rehab facility)Child care , Education & infrastructure development (if financially viable need a high-speed rail connectivity from mildura to Melbourne). Current Hospital bed strength cannot meet the requirements of present and future needs.

Your reasons for joining with Reason were all about our electorate and fighting for it. For us to have a voice in parliament and for services to be realised. Your integrity, strength and vision inspire us.

Stand proud Ali. You entered into an “arrangement” with the bestest of intentions. Discovered it was not in the best interests of your electorate and supporters. Very much appreciate your hard work. Stand proud girl, stand proud. 👏👏👏👏👏👏🙏🙏🙏Keep safe.

It is what it is Ali. You thought that by entering into a coalition that it would bring benefits to our region, and for whatever reason, you've made the decision to withdraw. Kudos to you for staying true to yourself, your community and your constituents. Keep powering on and keep delivering great results for our electorate. Side note: Wow. So many men being triggered on this post by a strong, determined and passionate female politician. Go and hang your head in shame gentlemen.

So happy you have made this decision Ali..All the best as you continue your fight in so many directions for your electorate!! You have so much fight & determination in you!! 🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀🍀

Sounds like you didn’t get your way and now your throwing the toys out. Your history doesn’t show anything aside from a far left strategy!

View more comments

🙌🙌 ... See MoreSee Less

🙌🙌
SEE MORE