Local Federal Members, Sharon Bird and Stephen Jones, today called on Jamie Briggs, Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development, to explain why the Abbott Government has failed to commit to funding critical local infrastructure projects in the Illawarra:
- $50 million seed funding for the Maldon Dombarton Rail Link
- $7.4 million for the Home of Football at Dapto
- Fibre to the premise rollout of the NBN
Mr Briggs is in Wollongong to meet with RDA Illawarra and launch the Transition Illawarra Report. The Assistant Minister needs to explain to the people of the Illawarra why the Abbott Government has axed these projects which are vital to jobs growth in the Illawarra.
“Labor committed $50 million seed funding for the Maldon Dombarton rail link. The studies have been completed, the State Government is completing the federally funded ($25.5 million) preparatory work to get the project shovel ready,” Sharon Bird said.
“The Abbott government has axed any further funding for this much needed rail link which, when completed, will mean fewer freight trains on the South Coast Line which will then take the pressure off our commuter rail line and will be a direct rail link from Port Kembla to south-west Sydney opening up new opportunities for employment.
Stephen Jones also called on Mr Briggs to explain why $7.4 million in funding for the Home of Football in West Dapto has been cut.
“Soccer is one of the most popular sports in the Illawarra, and for many years hasn’t had a home ground”, said Jones.
“When Labor was in Government we put $7.4 million aside for the Home of Football project. The Abbott Government cancelled it.
“The project is supported by everyone. It will generate hundreds of new jobs for the region and increase our sport-based tourism. It’s time for the Abbott Government to get on board.
“We will keep fighting to ensure soccer gets permanent home in the Illawarra.”