East-west link (2.09.2014)

Written on the 2 September 2014


Ms CROZIER (Southern Metropolitan) -- Last Thursday evening I attended a function which was widely reported in the media. A small group of rent-a-crowd professional protestors were said to be protesting against the east-west link. The aggression they showed and the intimidating actions they directed toward those attending the event were disgraceful.
I have no objection to freedom of speech or the ability of Victorians to protest, but I do object to the way this rabble conducted itself, not to mention the outrageous claims made by the so-called organiser about the actions of the police. The police officers in attendance did an exceptional job in protecting the public from the abuse and threatening antics of the protestors, whom I can only describe as misguided thugs.

The east-west link is a significant project which will have a similar impact to that had 20 years ago by CityLink, which has helped to transform Melbourne. The east-west link was supported by members of the Labor Party when they were in government. When it is finished it will help to reduce traffic congestion, especially for commuters who travel on the Monash or West Gate freeways on a regular basis, and it will improve road networks across Melbourne, providing more direct routes to destinations including the airport, the city and Melbourne's port.

So why does Daniel Andrews, the Leader of the Opposition in the other place, object to this project, and what can be made of his demands that the government develop a jobs plan and improve public transport? Stage 1 of the east-west link will create 3200 jobs, and stage 2 will create 3000 jobs in the construction phase alone. It is far from true to say that the coalition government has ignored public transport.

In just three and a half years an extra 10 000 bus, tram and train services have been created across Victoria.

Victoria cannot afford a union-dominated Andrews Labor government, which will stall the state's progress.

Only a Napthine government will fix the problems and build a better Victoria.

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