Federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese has announced the Gillard Government will up the ante on its Pacific Highway commitment in tomorrow night's Federal Budget.
Federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese has announced the Gillard Government will up the ante on its Pacific Highway commitment in tomorrow night's Federal Budget.

Hwy funding in Federal Budget

THE Federal Government says it will inject an extra $3.56 billion into its Nation Building Program in tomorrow night's budget - funding that could help finish the Pacific Highway duplication.

In a shot at the NSW Government, the Gillard Government says the 2016 Pacific Highway deadline could be achieved if the O'Farrell Government matches its outlay.

"On the latest estimate provided by the NSW Roads and Maritime Services, rebuilding the remaining sections of highway by the date first established by former Prime Minister John Howard will require an additional $7.1 billion over and above what the Federal and State governments have already committed," Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said.

"Federal Labor is prepared to step up and match any new funding, which the NSW Government allocates to this vital nation building project on a dollar for dollar basis up to a limit of $3.56 billion.

"Getting this job done will require an equal partnership between both levels of government," he said.

Premier Barry O'Farrell fired back saying the Federal Government had broken a commitment for an 80:20 funding split on the Pacific Highway upgrade.

Mr O'Farrell said Infrastructure Australia had called for the highway to be tolled, in response to Infrastructure NSW's recent submission for funding assistance.

"Despite Mr Albanese coming from NSW, he and his Federal colleagues have turned their backs on our State," Mr O'Farrell said.

"NSW has received $72 less per person ($287) from the Infrastructure Australia than the rest of the nation ($359).

"If funding was calculated on a per capita basis, NSW should have received an additional $500 million.

NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay said Infrastructure Australia continues to push for a Pacific Highway toll to help fund the duplication.

"Over the weekend Mr Albanese confirmed he was ripping out $2.31 billion in funding by walking away from an agreed 80:20 split on Pacific Highway funding," Mr Gay said.

The State Government claims Mr Albanese signed off on an 83:17 funding split for the highway in 2009 and in the last state budget the Coalition had allocated an extra $468 million to the upgrade, establishing a firm 80:20 split.

Projects currently underway:

  • Duplication of the section between Sapphire and Woolgoolga.

- Federal contribution: $632 million.

  • Construction of the new Bulahdelah Bypass.

- Federal contribution: $303.6 million.

  • Straightening the section between Herons Creek and Stills Road.

- Federal contribution: $53 million.

  • Construction of the new Kempsey Bypass.

- Federal contribution: $618 million.

  • Straightening of the Banora Point section.

- Federal contribution: $349 million.

  • Duplication of the Devils Pulpit section.

- Federal contribution: $62 million.

In addition, work will start on the following major projects during the coming financial year (2012-13):

  • Duplication of the section between Tintenbar and Ewingsdale.

- Federal contribution: $566.1 million.

  • Duplication of the section between Frederickton to Eungai.

- Federal contribution: To be finalised.

  • Duplication of the section between Nambucca and Urunga.

- Federal contribution: To be finalised.



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