Labor must fix rail network

Now the Federal Government has committed to providing money to fix Labor’s botched Murray Basin Rail Project, Daniel Andrews must commit to the full standardisation of this rail freight network.

The $200 million on the table from the Morrison Government will get the project back on track. It will pay to fix Labor’s stuff-ups and rip up work that was completed using 100-year-old crappy recycled rail – which slowed trains down and decreased network capacity.

Minister for Transport Infrastructure, Jacinta Allan is full of endless excuses, finger-pointing and blaming. The failure, incompetence and blundering is entirely Minister Allan’s fault. The Victorian Auditor-General blew the whistle on Labor’s mismanagement.

It’s time for tardy Labor to release the full Murray Basin Rail Project revised business case and get moving.

In Parliament, the Liberal Nationals have called for the release of the full revised business case, but Minister for Regional Development, Jaclyn Symes, Daniel Andrews and Jacinta Allan have thumbed their noses at the Victorian Parliament, refusing to release these critical documents laying out the way forward, including repairs of Labor’s earlier construction blunders. What do Andrews and Allan have to hide?

Labor’s revised businesses case which attempts to resurrect the project, released earlier this year, ditches plans to standardize the Sea Lake and Manangatang Lines, leaving the Port of Portland isolated from the rest of the network and at a disadvantage.

The Andrews Labor Government must immediately match the $5 million from the Federal Government to plan for the complete standardisation, get on with the job and do it properly.

Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Transport Infrastructure, David Davis:

“If Labor had completed the project properly the full Murray Basin Rail Project would have already been completed and this year’s bumper harvest could have moved to port by rail.

“It’s time Jacinta Allan got off her incompetent tail and got this project moving, repairing her blunders and completing the full scope of the project.”

Comments Attributable to Shadow Minister for Ports and Freight Roma Britnell:

“Once again, the Morrison Liberal Government is committing to major projects that will benefit regional Victorians while Daniel Andrews focuses on the city.

“This rescue package is on top of the $1.7 billion from the Federal Government which is providing the majority of funding to upgrade every regional passenger line.

“Labor completely stuffed Murray Basin Rail. But, while they’re quick to find billions of dollars to plug blowouts in city-based projects, it sends the bill to Canberra for regional projects.

“Daniel Andrews must play his part, chip in some cash and commit to a full standardisation of this rail freight network as a matter of priority.”

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