Thursday 1st December 2016
Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan has shown complete disrespect to rail commuters on the Echuca Bendigo line with her announcement this week on additional services according to Leader of The Nationals and Member for Murray Plains Peter Walsh.
Mr Walsh said that the line is a vital link for specialist medical appoints work business and education and the Labor government has again displayed an apathetic attitude to the basic needs of people living in the north of the state beyond Bendigo.
“They promised 80 new regional services across the state but gave us nothing ” he said.
“This is a typical announcement from a city-centric government that has no interest in ensuring you can get from A to B if you live outside Melbourne.”
Mr Walsh said The Regional Network Development Plan was released earlier this year amid great fanfare from Minister Allan.
“We were told it was to be built from local ideas about what our local communities needed from public transport.
“People attended the local sessions in good faith. They identified the need for increased services and line speed on the Echuca Bendigo line.
“Since that time many hundreds more local commuters have signed a petition to the Minister calling for immediate upgrades to the Echuca to Bendigo service.
“I think it would be fair to say that as a community we are gobsmacked to find that the only change that has come from what the Labor government lauded as “community consultation” is one slight timing adjustment to the Mon-Fri train/coach service
“Daniel Andrews and his Minister have shown a total disregard to our representations.
“They are treating us with contempt – a whole lot of talk but very little action ” Mr Walsh said.