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LIBERAL CUTS TO TRANSPORT ANOTHER STEP BACKWARDS FOR WA

November 27, 2015

 

GLENN STERLE

SENATOR FOR HASLUCK

LABOR SENATOR FOR WESTERN AUSTRALIA

 

CHAIR - RURAL & REGIONAL AFFAIRS & TRANSPORT SENATE COMMITTEE

 

LIBERAL CUTS TO TRANSPORT ANOTHER STEP BACKWARDS FOR WA

 

 

Train services across Perth are in the firing line after Colin Barnett and his Transport Minister Dean Nalder ordered transport officials to find $30m of savings annually over the next four years.

 

This decision will mean that the transport system in Perth, which is already in need of a major upgrade, will miss out on a total of $120m until 2020.

 

As reported in The Sunday Times at the weekend, sources have said that the most effective way of finding savings would include not only cuts to staff but also train services in the evenings, weekends and even some peak period services.

 

“The public transport system in Perth is already under pressure. Cutting services to save money is not going to help anyone. It is easy to see why some Western Australians prefer to drive as there is no incentive at the moment to use public transport” said Senator Sterle.

 

In September 2015, the transport minister Dean Nalder announced that the state governments transport policy will prioritise the movement of people rather than vehicles. Ripping millions of dollars from train services is in direct contradiction to what the government has set out to do.

 

Barnett has already broken a budget commitment this year by delaying the delivery of 50 “C-series” six car sets which was going to happen over a 10 year period. Due to poor economic management however, we don’t know when we will see these new cars.

 

If reducing train services at weekends and at night time is necessary to meet $120 million worth of cuts over the next 4 years, how can Colin Barnett guarantee that new rail infrastructure, like the much needed train line to Forrestfield will be built in the time frame he has committed to?           

        

The suburbs of High Wycombe, Forrestfield, Maida Vale and other neighbouring suburbs have been waiting long enough for a train line to connect them directly to the city. Any delay to the delivery of the Forrestfield link by 2020 will be seen as another broken promise.

 

I have written to the local member for Forrestfield Nathan Morton to ask what he knows of this decision. 

WE'LL PUT PEOPLE FIRST