Time that Labor stepped up on Gippsland trains
The Nationals Member for Gippsland South has called on the Melbourne Labor Government to invest in Gippsland Rail in the forthcoming State budget.
Mr O’Brien said it is now 10 months since the government released it’s much vaunted Regional Network Development Plan and yet nothing has changed in respect to Gippsland rail services east of Traralgon.
“The reliability, punctuality, performance and number of services on the Gippsland line is a regular issue for my constituents.
“More and more people are taking the train and the Gippsland line has been a very bad performer.
The most recent performance statistics for Gippsland show that almost 1 in 5 trains are not arriving on time.
“The government could quite easily add an additional morning service to Melbourne from Sale by constructing overnight stabling facilities at Sale, yet this project has languished now for two and half years under Labor.
“The previous Coalition Government took a package of $178.1 million to the last election to improve local rail services and Labor has not yet followed up on any of them.”
Mr O’Brien said if the State is to tackle its overcrowding issues to get people out of Melbourne and into country areas then we need good services.
As the Deputy Chair of the Coalition’s Population Taskforce, I’ve been hearing all around the State of the need for increased and improved passenger rail service.
“My Federal colleague, Darren Chester, has indicated that the Commonwealth is willing to put money into regional passenger rail.
The government needs to start looking for solutions to the track congestion between Pakenham and Southern Cross which is behind much of Gippsland problems.
“It’s time Daniel Andrews picked up the phone to follow that up to deliver important new services and improvement to the line for the people of Gippsland.”