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Turnbull infrastructure Budget fails on public transport and leaves next generation with private toll road mess, say Greens

Media Release
Janet Rice 9 May 2018

The Budget that was trumpeted as a big infrastructure investment is nothing more than a cash splash for private toll road operators and has nowhere near enough investment in the public transport that will unclog our cities and bring down pollution, say the Greens.

“Less than $1 in every $5 is going to public transport from the Government’s infrastructure grants,” said Senator Janet Rice, Australian Greens transport & infrastructure spokesperson.

“The Turnbull Government’s urban transport plan is still being written by the big private toll operators just like it was under Tony Abbott.”

“The few public transport projects are just playing catch-up to past need, not future challenges and urban population growth.”

“The funding for Melbourne’s Airport Rail is smoke and mirrors. It’s unclear if, how and when the $5 billion promised will be spent. It’s light on detail, big on promises, with no real money coming until two elections away.”

"Yet the Government has reserved billions of dollars in the Budget for the zombie East West Link and Perth Freight Link toll roads, refusing to see that commuters voted out the state governments that proposed them. Despite that lesson, Malcolm Turnbull has added money for an additional private toll road, the North East Link in Victoria."

"The Budget will further embed car-dependence in our cities and means people suffer the health and climate impacts of vehicle pollution."

“Malcolm Turnbull has squibbed his chance to prioritise investment in world-class public transport to leave our kids and grandkids healthy, liveable cities."

“What’s needed to tackle congestion long-term is serious investment in high capacity public transport, to give people the choice to leave their car at home.”

“Malcolm Turnbull has no plan for the transformative infrastructure needed for the long term future of our cities and regions, and it’s leaving the next generations stuck with cities that are a tangled mess of freeways and toll roads.”

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