Feb 20, 2018

Fed’s Victorian infrastructure rip-off to worsen

Commonwealth infrastructure grants to Victoria will collapse to just $46 per Victorian by 2020-21 – down from a yearly average of $201 per head during the period of the former Federal Labor Government.

The figures highlight the way in which the Abbott and Turnbull Governments have dudded Victoria – including the people of Batman – when it comes to infrastructure since taking office in 2013.

We already knew that this financial year (2017-18) Victoria, home to 25 per cent of Australians, will receive only 9.7 per cent of the total Commonwealth infrastructure budget.

But the situation will deteriorate over the next four years, with Commonwealth infrastructure grants to fall from $791 million this year to $280 million in 2020-21.

The Coalition’s infrastructure rip-off began as soon as it took office and cut funding from Victorian projects including the Melbourne Metro and M80 upgrade.

By contrast, the former Federal Labor Government invested in transformative projects such as the Regional Rail Link, the M80, the Princes Highway Upgrades, Geelong Ring Road and the upgrade of the Western Highway.

The Turnbull Government’s rip-off for Victoria means less money for trams, trains, bike paths and roads in Batman.

Victorians need strong Labor representatives like Ged Kearney who understand that investment in public transport and other infrastructure is the key to dealing with urban congestion.