Signed, sealed, delivered: $2.1bn for local roads
The Australian Government says it has delivered "another important tranche" of its infrastructure and regional development agenda with the passage of the $2.1 billion Roads to Recovery programme through the Senate.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss said the successful passage of the Land Transport Infrastructure Amendment Bill 2014 means the $2.1 billion the Government allocated to councils for local road and street works under the Federal Budget is now signed, sealed and will be delivered next month.
"Despite months of road blocks by Labor and the Greens, the Australia Government has reached agreement with Senate crossbenchers to guarantee this vital funding for local communities across Australia," Truss said.
"I thank PUP, Motoring Enthusiast and Family First Senators for their goodwill in working through the issues and clearing the waters left muddied by Labor's penchant for red tape, unnecessary bureaucracy and sheer bloody-minded obstructionism.
Left 'in limbo'
"Labor left Roads to Recovery in limbo and local councils stranded, with the funding terminating on 30 June this year. They then played a cynical political game to stall legislation that locks in funding for councils, threatening delivery of the first round of funding due in September.
"Inexplicably, Labor voted against the legislation in the House of Representatives that guarantees the $2.1 billion for local roads and streets. Today, they didn't oppose it in the Senate.
"This funding is expressly for local roads and street work needed in local communities. Councils choose the projects they want in their own areas.
"The $2.1 billion that flows from today's passage of the Land Transport Infrastructure Amendment Bill 2014 will make a real difference to the ability of councils to deliver the better, safer local roads and streets their communities need.
"This Government is committed to building the infrastructure Australia needs…from the local level up."
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