Here’s the true tale of two Victorias – while Daniel Andrews pours billions of dollars into metropolitan roads, country Victorians are dealing with sub-standard, dangerous local roads and highways, full of potholes, cracked and warped surfaces.
The first thing Daniel Andrews did after becoming Premier was to scrap the country roads and bridges program, which gave councils $160 million to prioritise and fix their local road networks. He then spent that money upgrading bridges in his own suburban electorate. He also cut road maintenance funding.
Daniel Andrews is presiding over a shambolic mess of a road maintenance system, which waits until roads are at their worst before giving them any attention, rather than proactively and regularly maintaining them, which costs less and has significantly better long-term results.
I have regional transport businesses telling me their vehicle repair and maintenance bills are going through the roof because of the shocking state of our roads. I have even had reports of solid bluestone being damaged in transit because the roads are so rough.
Under Daniel Andrews, the cost of moving freight by road in country Victoria is on the rise.
Meanwhile, all Daniel Andrews does is complain about Commonwealth funding – ignoring the fact that federal funding for state road maintenance has increased year-on-year since 2014 and that the Federal Coalition Government has announced a $2 billion package for roads – with rural roads to receive the lion’s share.
Despite saying, he doesn’t want to go back to the “bad old days” where there were two Victorias – the truth is under Daniel Andrews, Victoria is already split in two because the Premier for Melbourne has no interest in regional Victoria.