Jacinta Allan

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Baillieu must come clean on future of Regional Rail Link

Thursday, 3 February 2011

The Baillieu Government must come clean on the future of the Regional Rail Link, Shadow Minister for Regional and Rural Development Jacinta Allan said today.

Ms Allan said she was concerned about reports that Transport Minister Terry Mulder was on the brink of scrapping the $4.3 billion project after confirming just last month it would go ahead.

"It's time for Ted Baillieu and Terry Mulder to be honest with country Victorians about their support for this important infrastructure project," Ms Allan said.

"People living in regional and rural areas deserve better transport links and the Regional Rail Link will deliver additional and improved services.

"This is a transformational project that builds on Labor's legacy of boosting regional rail to Bendigo, Ballarat, Geelong and Gippsland.

"Mr Mulder said the Regional Rail Link ‘is a project that's proceeding' just three weeks ago.

"But it now seems the Government is going to scrap this vital regional project to fund their uncosted election promises in the suburbs of Melbourne."

Ms Allan said up to 3000 jobs would be at risk if the Government decided to scrap the project.

"Abandoning the project now would be a cruel blow to thousands of potential workers and a slap in the face to residents of regional and rural communities across Victoria," she said.

"Terry Mulder needs to explain why he's about to walk away from this project just three weeks after singing its praises.

"Why is the Baillieu Government turning its back on commuters after claiming only last month that the project would provide ‘improved capacity and reliability'?

"Regional Victorians remember well the Coalition's opposition to the regional fast rail project.

"Now it appears they have plans to scuttle the next big thing in regional transport."


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