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Budget leaves regional roads to ruin

Regional roads will continue to disintegrate following the release of the Andrews Labor Government’s Budget this week.

$165 million is planned to be spent on regional road restoration and maintenance over the next year, representing a 23% reduction on the previous year’s budget.

State Liberal Member for Eildon Cindy McLeish MP said that local roads will suffer because of cuts in the budget.

“Despite great fanfare and self-adulation, Daniel Andrews is not fixing the country roads as he promised to do in 2014,” Ms McLeish said.

“Buried within the budget we see that spending on repairing regional roads will be cut from $215.3 million in 2017/18 to $165.2 million in 2018/19.”

“It is sheer lunacy that road maintenance would be cut when the surfaces of our roads are continuing to get worse. This will make roads like the Melba and Maroondah Highways even more dangerous,” Ms McLeish said.

Ms McLeish also said that local councils will be left in the lurch with only two years’ worth of funding announced to help upgrade local roads.

“Daniel Andrews cut the $160 million Country Roads and Bridges Program when he was elected, but is now bragging about reserving $100 million to help councils with country roads for only two years.”

“A Liberal Nationals Government will provide certainty for local government by delivering $1 million to 40 rural councils each year over four years. This will give local councils the confidence to get on with fixing country roads and saving country lives,” Ms McLeish said.

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