06/01/2017 - 14:31

Feds firm on Roe 8 funds

06/01/2017 - 14:31

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The federal government will be sticking to its guns on the Roe 8 project, Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher affirmed today, saying the $1.2 billion committed by the Commonwealth to the project would not be reallocated.

Protests have been under way against the project in recent weeks.

The federal government will be sticking to its guns on the Roe 8 project, Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher affirmed today, saying the $1.2 billion committed by the Commonwealth to the project would not be reallocated.

It comes two days after Western Australian Labor leader Mark McGowan unveiled a proposal to cancel the project and redirect $236 million of state government funding to three other infrastructure investments around Perth.

Speaking to journalists in Sydney today, Mr Fletcher said the funding component was for the whole Perth Freight Link project, not just the Roe 8 phase.

“I’d make this very important point: No money has yet been paid of that almost 1.2 billion that’s been committed,” he said.

“And I again repeat that the federal government’s commitment of almost $1.2 billion to Perth Freight Link is for the whole Perth Freight Link project, and it is specific to that project.

“We’ve consistently said (that); it can’t simply be reallocated to other projects, as WA Labor seems to be seeking to do.”

Mr Fletcher said the project would improve safety in the region, reduce traffic and improve connectivity to Fremantle Ports.

When asked whether the threat to withdraw the money was an attempt to support the re-election of Premier Colin Barnett, Mr Fletcher said he was describing the agreement already in place.

“What I’m simply explaining is the nature of the arrangement that has been reached between the Commonwealth government and the Western Australian government … it’s simply stating what the facts are in relation to that financial commitment,” he said.

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