MaroondahMedia ReleasesSustainable Transport

The Age: Libs told to do better

By May 5, 2006One Comment

Amid news of a new leader for the Victorian Liberal Party, the Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has challenged the State Opposition to focus on the issue of sustainable transport instead of condemning Melbourne to unsustainable and costly car dependence.

The Age has reported on the PTUA’s call for these policies to be revised:

Association spokesman Alex Makin said the Liberals must revise transport commitments and drop ideas such as half tolls on EastLink and more road tunnels.

Since entering government in 1999 the Bracks Government has delivered very little for public transport. Despite making endless promises towards train and tram extensions and much needed bus improvements, very little has actually been delivered.

The Bracks Government has broken or radically diminished many of its’ promises. It is therefore up to the Opposition to provide a genuine alternative.

Media Release – Thursday, 4 May 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION

Call to Scrap Opposition’s Car Dependent Transport Policies

The Public Transport Users Association (PTUA) has challenged the Victorian Liberal Party to develop new transport policies to ensure sustainable relief against mounting petrol prices

“The Liberal Party must revise its current transport commitments and drop nonsensical ideas such as half tolls on EastLink and additional road tunnels”, PTUA spokesman Alex Makin said. “It is an undeniable fact that petrol prices will continue to increase and it is clear that people desperately need and want an alternative to car dependence.”

“Melbourne needs a government with a vision to deliver improved public transport and hence ensure the future economic prosperity of the city”, Mr. Makin said. “The fact is that as petrol prices increase households have less disposable income for other purchases thus threatening the viability of the strong retail precincts that exist in suburbs such as Ringwood, Knox or Frankston.”

With petrol prices already exceeding earlier predictions of $1.30 per litre and transport being one of the largest items of household expenditure (averaging 15.2%) it is increasingly apparent that rising petrol prices are disproportionately affecting those people who do not have an alternative to car travel. The PTUA’s view is supported by a report published by Griffith University entitled Oil Vulnerability in the Australian City.

The construction of the Doncaster and Rowville train lines, the South Morang rail extension, the Knox and Doncaster Road tram extensions and a vastly improved bus network to ensure frequent and readily available services would cost less than $1 billion, far less than estimates for current road projects.

“The Bracks government has broken or radically diminished many of its public transport promises. It is therefore up to the Opposition to provide a genuine alternative and hence embrace the need for vastly improved public transport. The ‘no tolls’ policy and continued road building has the potential to neglect public transport and hence fail to secure the future social and economic prosperity of Melbourne and its outer suburbs,” Mr. Makin concluded.

About the Public Transport Users Association (PTUA):
Founded in 1976, the PTUA is the recognised consumer organisation representing passengers of public transport. The PTUA is a non-profit, voluntary organisation with no political affiliation, which lobbies governments and public transport authorities in the interest of all users of public transport.

ALL MEDIA ENQUIRIES:
ALEXANDER MAKIN 0409 136 213

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Alex Makin

Alex Makin

Alex Makin is a councillor for the Mullum Ward in the City of Maroondah. Alex has been a councillor since 2005, representing ratepayers, businesses, community groups and residents. I aim to continue making a difference and welcome any thoughts you may have in regard to life, community and business in Maroondah. Phone: (03) 9870 8202 or 0408 311 645 Email: alex@alexmakin.com.au

One Comment

  • Alex Makin says:

    Ted Ballieu, current Shadow Minister for Planning, appears likely to assume the Liberal leadership on Monday. According to The Age:

    Mr Baillieu is likely to dump the Liberals’ controversial half-tolls policy on EastLink, as he works to rebuild the party before the November election.

    Party insiders predicted Mr Baillieu would scrap the half-tolls policy developed by the resigning leader, Robert Doyle, and instead resolve to impose full tolls, as proposed by Labor, freeing up hundreds of millions of dollars for other vote-winning promises.

    Public Transport has progressively deteriorated over the past seven years and any bus improvements have been minimal at best. If the Victorian Liberal Party is serious about its own future and the future of Victoria it will pledge to improve the public transport system to ensure reliable, frequent and readily available services for all of Melbourne.

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