Federal MPs launch into bomber Bailey over 'total failure'
THE Sunshine Coast's federal MPs have again been forced to defend their track record on infrastructure spending in the face of more shots fired by Queensland Transport Minister Mark Bailey.
Mr Bailey followed criticism over the lack of federal funding for the North Coast Rail duplication project with a scathing assessment of Fisher MP Andrew Wallace and Fairfax MP Ted O'Brien's inaction on road upgrades.
Mr Wallace and Mr O'Brien returned fire, issuing a joint statement that blasted the claims as "another disingenuous attempt to distract attention from his own Labor Government's total failure to invest in State Government roads on the Sunshine Coast".
Mr Bailey used the RACQ's latest Red Spot Survey, which singled out Caloundra Rd, Nicklin Way, Kawana Link Way, the Sunshine Mwy and the Bruce Highway as the region's most frustrating roads, to provide ammunition for his latest blast.
"They refuse to fairly fund congestion-busting projects like the Sunshine Coast rail duplication, which will provide more frequent, reliable public transport for coast residents and reduce congestion on the roads," he said.
But Mr Bailey's use of the RACQ survey was seen as a backfire by Mr Wallace and Mr O'Brien, who pointed out that four of the five roads on the list were State Government roads.
"... yet Mr Bailey continues to offer nothing but token band-aid solutions like traffic lights which (thankfully) rarely operate and a few metres of additional lanes around roundabouts leading to the hospital.
"Meanwhile Sunshine Coast motorists continue to wait in grid-locked local traffic every day."
Mr Wallace urged Mr Bailey and the State Government to "stop trying to pass the buck" and accept their responsibilities.
"Mark Bailey needs to stop playing politics today, get on with his job and build the local State Government roads we need now and for the future," he said
"And while he is at it he should speak to (Federal Labor Leader) Bill Shorten and ask why Federal Labor have not committed one cent to the Bruce Highway, the North Coast Rail, or any of the other infrastructure needs of the Sunshine Coast."
Mr Bailey claimed the State Government was doing the "heavy lifting" when it came to fixing congestion.
He highlighted projects such as the $22 million Kawana road upgrades and the $160 million Bruce Hwy upgrade.