Comments today by Tony Abbott have again proven his ignorance and ineptitude when it comes to our cities, this time in Melbourne.
On the one hand Mr Abbott stated:
“Melbourne is a city. It's not a village and a city needs a proper transport system”
But in a fit of cognitive dissonance went on to say:
“I've made it clear that Commonwealth infrastructure funding does not go for urban rail because commuter rail is wholly and solely the responsibility of the State Governments.”
If Mr Abbott truly recognises that Melbourne is a city and not a village, he needs to drop his petty ideological prejudice against funding urban rail projects like Melbourne Metro.
It’s simple – our cities need urban rail and roads to unlock their productive potential. The Commonwealth Government should fund projects that deliver value for money on a mode-neutral basis.
Unfortunately, Mr Abbott’s position is consistent with comments by Joe Hockey that cities are “not our (the Commonwealth Government’s) jurisdiction”.
Australia needs a Government that’s prepared to take responsibility for where four out of five people live and 80 per cent of our national GDP is generated.
To this effect, Labor has released a ten-point action plan for better, more prosperous cities aimed at lifting productivity, sustainability and liveability of urban Australia.
Only Labor will fund urban rail and road projects, and take our cities seriously.