NSW govt should make move on NW rail link: Robertson
07/06/2012 - The NSW government must cough up its share and secure the federal funds needed to get on with building the Parramatta to Epping rail link, the opposition says.
Opposition leader John Robertson says Premier Barry O'Farrell is wasting time trying to convince the federal government to reallocate funds earmarked for construction of the Parramatta to Epping Rail Link, to the North West Rail Link.
Robertson says O'Farrell could secure $2.1 billion of federal infrastructure funding if it committed $520 million from state coffers.
That would allow work on the Parramatta to Epping link to begin immediately, he said.
"By pledging $520 million today, the state will receive a guaranteed return of $2.1 billion from the Federal Government," Robertson told reporters outside Parramatta station on Wednesday.
"It is like paying a 20 per cent deposit on your house and someone else covers the mortgage."
The link promises speedy connections for suburbs like Liverpool, in Sydney's west, to Chatswood and St Leonards in the north.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard went to the 2010 federal election promising to put $2.1 billion towards a Parramatta to Epping rail link, on the proviso the NSW government contributed $500 million.
But O'Farrell wants that money transferred to the North West Rail Link - which would link Sydney's northwestern suburbs with Epping and the city centre.
Robertson said there was no need to prioritise the Parramatta to Epping link over the North West line.
"Barry O'Farrell could build both.
"He's not going to get the money from the $2.1 billion to go to the North West Rail Link.
"The commonwealth government has been absolutely clear."
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