Labor’s Federal Opposition spokesman for infrastructure and transport Anthony Albanese and ALP candidate for Whitsunday Bronwyn Taha, in Mackay yesterday, want the Bruce Hwy fixed.
Labor’s Federal Opposition spokesman for infrastructure and transport Anthony Albanese and ALP candidate for Whitsunday Bronwyn Taha, in Mackay yesterday, want the Bruce Hwy fixed. Tony Martin

Labor blasts PM and Newman over Bruce

PRIME Minister Tony Abbott and Queensland Premier Campbell Newman were in the firing line over the state of the Bruce Hwy yesterday.

Labor's candidate for Whitsunday Bronwyn Taha and Federal Opposition spokesman for infrastructure and transport Anthony Albanese stood on the highway just north of Mackay to criticise Mr Abbott for not boosting funding for an upgrade and to blast Mr Newman for "letting him off the hook".

Mr Albanese said it was also "an outrage" that, despite funding being put into the Budget in 2013, construction work on the Mackay Ring Road had now been put off to 2017. If Labor was returned it would be made a priority, he said.

"The planning work was completed and construction should have begun in May 2014. What we should be at right now is a construction site," he said.

"Because it's in Mackay it is simply not a priority."

Mr Albanese said the ring road had been identified by Labor as a priority not just because of road safety but because of its economic benefits.

Ms Taha said if Labor was elected the Walkerston Bypass would also be "a huge priority".

Mr Albanese said if Labor was returned at state and federal levels he would expect significant monies to be allocated for roads and community infrastructure in the central region.

"These roads need to be a priority, particularly those with impacts on productivity and safety".


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