Member for Lowan and Deputy Leader of the Nationals Emma Kealy has called out an Andrews Labor Government trial to provide “cash for clunkers” as completely missing the mark in making our crumbling country roads safer.
Labor’s Roads Minister this week announced the unsafe2safe program for regional Victorians, which will provide a cash subsidy to take old cars off the road, but only extends to a mere 150 cars across the state and doesn’t provide any funding to make our unsafe roads any safer.
“The government expects our cars to be roadworthy, but Labor won’t make the necessary investments to make Victorian country roads carworthy,” Ms Kealy said.
“Providing cash handouts for people to upgrade their car to a newer model in the name of road safety is completely futile unless we have safe roads to begin with.
“On Wednesday I met with concerned locals at the Big Dipper, a notorious stretch of the Coleraine-Edenhope Road where the camber of the road falls the opposite way to the curve, creating a frightening and dangerous experience for drivers.
“I have campaigned alongside locals for many years for the government to fix this road – along with so many others across the Lowan electorate that pose a risk to drivers – but Labor is too preoccupied with bandaid fixes and ill-conceived schemes that don’t address the real issue.
“Labor has had eight years to fix our crumbling road network and has consistently failed to get the job done. Only a Nationals Coalition Government will adequately invest in regional roads to make them safe.”
Ms Kealy has consistently spoken in Parliament about the deteriorating state of Lowan’s roads,
Earlier this month Ms Kealy received correspondence from the Roads Minister claiming that the Andrews Labor Government has delivered a significant and sustained increase in road maintenance investment, despite State Budget figures showing Labor has cut $200 million from the state’s road maintenance budget in the past two years alone.
Ms Kealy said Labor simply could not be trusted to look after country drivers.
“All we have ever asked for is our fair share, but our needs continue to be ignored so that Labor can overspend on metropolitan road projects,” she said.
“A change in government in November will deliver more money for road maintenance and a better and safer future for our regional communities.”