Labor missing the mark on rail
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Labor missing the mark on rail

Labor’s plans to build a rail tunnel through Melbourne’s suburbs – to cost around $50 billion and unlikely to be completed for another 30 years – is a slap in the face for East Gippsland commuters.
Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, says the region is being snubbed by the Andrews Labor Government, which despite its willingness to spend big, has not showed any interest in improving travel for East Gippsland rail passengers.
“Labor still has not matched the Liberal Nationals’ $633 million commitment to replace all long-haul rolling stock with new train sets,” Mr Bull said.
“We have committed to replacing the entire long-haul fleet on the Bairnsdale line with new-generation trains that have greater carrying capacity, are capable of faster speeds, are more reliable and come with an air conditioning service that actually works,” Mr Bull said.
“Since March we have been calling on Daniel Andrews to match our commitment, but instead he chooses to ignore East Gippsland passengers in favour of those in Melbourne.
“On top of this, Labor has been ridiculing our plan to speed up services on the Gippsland line by committing $8 million to develop a business case for a dedicated line.”
Mr Bull said the Bairnsdale line was the worst performing in Victoria, with recent figures showing only 49.3 per cent of services arrived on time.
“Our community has been crying out for reliable services that don’t see us arriving late or constantly shunted onto replacement buses, but instead Labor is throwing money into the suburbs and ignoring rural and regional Victorians,” he said.
Shadow Minister for Regional Victoria and Decentralisation, Peter Walsh, said Daniel Andrews was ignoring the needs of regional passengers yet again.
“Regional Victoria needs a modern regional rail network if we are going to properly decentralise our population, but this city-centric Labor Government can’t see past Melbourne’s tram tracks,” Mr Walsh said.
Caption: Gippsland East Nationals MP, Tim Bull, says the Andrews Labor Government needs to show more interest in East Gippsland’s rail passengers in the wake of its commitment to build a multi-billion-dollar rail tunnel through Melbourne’s suburbs.
Friday, August 31, 2018