Roads funding a great start – fingers crossed there is more to come

This morning’s Great Ocean Road funding announcement is a good start, but there is plenty more needed, Member for South West Coast and Shadow Minister for Rural Roads Roma Britnell says.

“Any investment in our roads is of course a good thing and the commitment to upgrading the inland routes comes off the back of a very strong community campaign,” Ms Britnell said.

“I’m concerned the $17 million to be spent on dairy supply chain roads is nowhere near enough to make any real difference – especially when bridge replacement and strengthening is flagged as part of this funding.

“I would also like some guarantees that any work being done will last longer than some other works we have seen around the region – The Auditor General found in 2017 that there was no oversight or accountability when it came to road repairs. The Government has so far failed to address the issues the Auditor General raised.

“Before a road surface is ripped up as part of this spending, the department needs to ensure works will be done to the highest quality and will be built to last.”

Ms Britnell said she remains hopeful there will be further announcements in the State Budget that will include matched funding for the Princes Highway West upgrade.

“There is $140 million on the table from the federal government for this vital and long overdue upgrade,” she said.

“The State Government have the opportunity to have a road upgraded for half price – I don’t understand why they have so far been reluctant to take up that offer.

“The Princes Highway is a State Government owned and controlled asset, they need to make a contribution to get on and get this upgrade done.”

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