NSW Budget receives positive response from transport industry

ATA NSW has commended the 2014-15 NSW Budget particularly for areas where the spending will improve safety, reduce congestion and boost productivity on the state’s roads.

The Budget has resulted in almost $5.5 billion in spending on NSW roads, including planning fund for a number of new Sydney motorways as well as new funding for the Pacific, Princes and Newell Highways.

According to Jodie Broadbent (pictured) from the ATA NSW, the Budget included a record investment in the state’s road and freight infrastructure. “The Budget continues the upgrade of the Pacific Highway between Hexham and the Queensland border to a four lane, divided road. The upgrade will improve safety for everyone who uses the highway, whether they ride a motorbike, drive a car or drive a truck,” she said.

“Trucking operators in country NSW will benefit from the Budget, with $46 million from NSW ($77 million in total) to fix critical bridges and to build or upgrade truck rest areas. Rest areas are vitally important for the trucking industry. Truck drivers are required by law to take regular rest breaks; they need to have safe places to stop.

“Projects like this one will increase the productivity of the trucking industry and reduce the number of truck trips we need to deliver the state’s freight.”

The NSW Budget emphasised the importance of logistics and the efficient movement of freight according to the Australian Logistics Council.

“ALC has a long held policy supporting the recycling of government assets (such as the long term lease of the Ports of Botany and Newcastle) and investing proceeds in the Restart NSW Fund”, said ALC CEO Michael Kilgariff.

The Budget has allocated funding for a number of key projects including $1.2 billion for the Pacific Highway to match the Australian Government’s commitment of $5.6 billion; $109 million for airport roads around Badgery’s Creek ($20 million from NSW); an additional $266 million to fast-track the construction of WestConnex; $70 million for Central Coast roads; $283.7 million for the NSW Road Safety strategy, including $240 million from the Community Road Safety Fund generated from camera detected fines; and $10 million planning funds for the F6 Extension.

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