Gippsland South The Nationals Public Transport Transport Rail

Labor fails again on Gippsland rail

The Melbourne Labor Government has again failed to deliver for Gippsland Rail passengers with its half-baked announcement this morning.

The Nationals members for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien and Gippsland East, Tim Bull said the announcement by Jacinta Allan again showed Labor has no regard for the needs of people east of Traralgon.

“There is once again nothing for the long-haul Bairnsdale line that delivers extra services or improved facilities for passengers in Sale and East Gippsland,” Mr O’Brien said.

“The government has talked a big game on rail, but in two and half years has failed to deliver anything for public transport users beyond the Latrobe Valley.

“The former Liberal-Nationals Coalition Government had a fully costed plan going into the last state election that would have improved services and upgraded the Gippsland line and yet Labor is still tinkering at the edges.

“It would be quite simple to add at least one additional service if an overnight stabling facility was constructed at Sale, but Labor won’t even look at that option,” Mr O’Brien said.

Mr Bull said there was nothing in today’s announcement for East Gippsland rail users.

“It seems Jacinta Allan and Harriet Shing have again forgotten East Gippsland, as they have done with much of rural and regional Victoria. It seems if you’re more than 90 minutes from Melbourne you are not on their radar.

“We need improved rolling stock and services and we definitely need the Avon River Bridge at Stratford to be replaced.  I would have thought it would be one of the highest priorities for the Gippsland line.”

Mr O’Brien said the Liberal-Nationals Coalition was working on a population policy which would have rail as a key plank, with policies to be announced well ahead of the next election.

“Our Federal colleague, Darren Chester, has indicated that the Commonwealth would be happy to contribute funds to a Gippsland line upgrade and yet Daniel Andrews and Jacinta Allan have delivered nothing.

“It’s time Labor treated Gippsland more seriously and gave us the services we need.”

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