News

Oakeshott expects hwy funds in budget

Trevor Veale

THE pressure is building on the New South Wales Government to commit $3.5 billion to the Pacific Highway upgrade as NSW north coast MPs join Independent Rob Oakeshott in a bid to get the project complete by 2016.

Mr Oakeshott said on Tuesday that he had invested all his political capital to get the project complete by the proposed deadline.

Six days out from Federal Budget sittings, Mr Oakeshott said on Tuesday he expected the Federal Government would include $3.5 billion of the $7 billion package in the budget.

But Federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese was staying mum, instead reiterating past comments that both governments had agreed years ago that each would pay half.

While Mr Albanese would not comment on the budget, Mr Oakeshott said he had seen the official schedule of works for the project last month, revealing plans to complete the upgrade by 2016.

"All my political capital has gone into record Pacific Highway funding of $3.5 billion in the 2012 budget, which is the agreed 50 per cent funding to get the job done by 2016," he said.

"They (the NSW Government) must come up with the money to meet the commitment they made to voters so we can finish the highway by 2016. I can do no more.

"The $3.5 billion of the $7 billion cost looks to be committed.

"It's now over to NSW to match this amount, as agreed."

Labor MPs Janelle Saffin and Justine Elliot also reiterated their support for the project, saying that they were waiting for commitments from the NSW Government to help fund the project.

Ms Saffin said it was "my local road, and there's been far too many fatalities (on the road)".

"I've got a fact file six pages long that shows this goes back years to when the current state government promised, in opposition, it would back 50 per cent of the costs.

"Now we're all waiting for them to make good on that promise."

NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay said that apart from the Pacific Highway, key upgrade projects on the National Land Transport Network in NSW had "generally been funded at least 80 per cent by the Australian Government".

He said that a 50/50 funding split would see the Commonwealth's contribution reduced by $2.3 billion.

"All we're asking for is the same treatment the Federal Government gave the former State Labor Government, to continue the same 80:20 funding split agreement," he said.

"This is not only $2.3 billion that Gillard would be removing from the Pacific Highway, it's $2.3 billion that her Government would be removing from the people of NSW.

"Not only will the people of NSW lose out in an economic sense, firstly and more importantly they will lose out in a road safety sense."

Topics:  federal budget 2012, pacific highway, rob oakeshott


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

New app to help you remember what bin day it is

Byron Shire Council have a new App to help you remember your bin days. Photo: Warren Lynam / Sunshine Coast Daily

Ever raced down the driveway with a bin only to find you're too late

Byron Shire News Community Calendar

SWITHED ON: Local MP Justine Elliot was in Mullum last week to announce Community Owned Renewable Energy Mullumbimby (COREM) will receive $5,000 in federal funding for the installation of a 10kw solar PV system at the Mullumbimby Showgrounds under the Stronger Communities Programme. Pictured are: Justine Elliot MP, Robert Passey (COREM), Valley Lipcer (Trust member) Ella Goninan(President COREM) and Harry Hackett (Manager Showgrounds).

This week's Byron Shire News Community Calendar

Locals: Stay away from Byron, McDonalds!

The golden arches of McDonalds. Photo: John Gass

Readers of The Northern Star have fired up

Latest deals and offers

Remember to invent a time machine soon

We may have witnessed what will come to be seen, by future generations, as one of the most fateful events in the history of the world, as we know it.

New app to help you remember what bin day it is

Byron Shire Council have a new App to help you remember your bin days. Photo: Warren Lynam / Sunshine Coast Daily

Ever raced down the driveway with a bin only to find you're too late

Byron Shire News Community Calendar

SWITHED ON: Local MP Justine Elliot was in Mullum last week to announce Community Owned Renewable Energy Mullumbimby (COREM) will receive $5,000 in federal funding for the installation of a 10kw solar PV system at the Mullumbimby Showgrounds under the Stronger Communities Programme. Pictured are: Justine Elliot MP, Robert Passey (COREM), Valley Lipcer (Trust member) Ella Goninan(President COREM) and Harry Hackett (Manager Showgrounds).

This week's Byron Shire News Community Calendar

Locals: Stay away from Byron, McDonalds!

The golden arches of McDonalds. Photo: John Gass

Readers of The Northern Star have fired up

Scientist shoots down Migaloo imposter theory

Wally Franklin of Byron Bay, has been researching whales for many years, and the international court tribunal's decision on the ban of whaling by the Japanese means a lot to him.
Photo : Mireille Merlet-Shaw/The Northern Star

Well, it doesn't get much more scientifically definitive than that.

Byron Rugby swaps scrum for gardens

TEAM WORK: Applying their physical skill and strength to the garden Byron Youth Activity Centre.

Byron Bar Rugby players helped spruce up the YAC on Saturday.

Run helps shine a light on cancer

ABOVE: Byron Lighthouse Run supports Crackin' Cancer and the North Coast Cancer Institute.

This year the Byron Lighthouse Run is turning 10

Vintaea: Why I left The Bachelor on the first night

Vintaea Carlos was one of 22 "bachelorettes" looking for love on the fourth season of The Bachelor.

Queensland beauty leaves Richie at rose ceremony.

Amber Heard claims Johnny Depp is stalling divorce

Amber Heard claims Johnny Depp is delaying their divorce

The Bachelor host: this year's season is a cracker

The Bachelor host Osher Gunsberg.

GUNSBERG says tonight will be "the best night of TV of the year".

Kerri-Anne Kennerley to Sonia Kruger: "Stay brave"

She said her television peer should "stay brave"

Swimwear designer looking for love on The Bachelor

Noni Janur on her first day of filming.

The 25-year-old is one of 22 women vying for Richie Strahan’s heart

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

Massive residential 9-storey high-rise hit by delays

An artist’s impression of the eight-storey-high apartment complex that Bernoth Holdings wants to build in South Toowoomba, next to the City Golf Club.

Developer struggles to get approved high-rise development started