Labor urges government to fast-track CQ infrastructure
LABOR Deputy Leader Richard Marles is urging Capricornia MP Michelle Landry to get cracking with local infrastructure projects to stimulate the economy.
Mr Marles said local projects, such as the Rockhampton-Yeppoon road upgrade, needed fast-tracking following comments made by Reserve Bank governor Philip Lowe calling on the Federal Government to build more to stimulate a flagging economy.
Mr Lowe's suggestion that the government "should not rely on monetary policy alone" came after the RBA dropped official interest rates to a record low of 1 per cent ealier this month.
Following a lengthy discussion with Capricorn Enterprise CEO Mary Carroll about CQ's future project pipeline, Mr Marles and Opposition spokesman for Northern Australia Murray Watt demanded an accelerated infrastructure rollout.
"The economy is sluggish, it needs stimulus and one of the ways we can do that is to bring forward infrastructure projects around Australia and a good example would be the duplication of the Rockhampton to Yeppoon highway," Mr Marles said.
"That is a road project that is not due until 2021-22, we should be doing that now. Getting the jobs up and running now.
"We're calling on the government, (Senator) Matt Canavan, (Capricornia MP) Michelle Landry, to use their voices to advocate for critical infrastructure projects like that to happen straightaway."
Senator Watt said the construction of Rookwood Weir and the Rockhampton Ring Road as other projects which could be sped up.
Addressing the call to speed up Rookwood Weir, Ms Landry said she was fed up with delaying tactics from the State Labor Government, urging Mr Marles to "put a rocket up his state colleagues".
"The only barrier to the State receiving the promised money from the Federal Government is that they refuse to get digging," Ms Landry said.
"The federation funds projects on a milestone basis, you do the work, you get the money. The money is on the table waiting patiently for the Queensland Government to get moving with the project they have already delayed by a full year."
She said the upgrade of the Rockhampton-Yeppoon Rd was the responsibility of the State Government and the project hinged on their works.
"We as a Federal Government have thankfully delivered $64 million to address the various safety and efficiency trouble spots along this vital link," she said.
"I hope this money will soon be put to use by Main Roads, who are in charge of this road. I fought for this funding because I don't want to see it take another life.
"I'm sure the Member for Keppel will join me in advocating for the timely delivery of these upgrades and will lobby her government to invest the funds this section of road so desperately needs."