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Wednesday, 28 February 2018
Page: 2276

Infrastructure


Mr ALBANESE (Grayndler) (14:54): My question is again addressed to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport. I refer to the government's own budget papers for his own portfolio, which show that federal infrastructure investment in Tasmania will fall from $174 million this financial year to $53 million in 2019-20. Is this a reflection of the fact that not a single new federally funded major infrastructure project has been commenced under either the Abbott-Joyce, Turnbull-Joyce or Turnbull-McCormack governments?


Mr McCORMACK (RiverinaDeputy Prime Minister, Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Leader of The Nationals, Minister for Veterans' Affairs, Minister for Defence Personnel, Deputy Leader of the House and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Centenary of ANZAC) (14:54): Thanks for the plug! I thank the honourable member for Grayndler for his question. There's one thing the people of Tasmania should do this Saturday, and that's vote back the Will Hodgman Liberal government. I was asked about infrastructure spending in Tasmania. From 2013-14 to 2020-21 the Commonwealth has locked in a $1.1 billion infrastructure investment in the Apple Isle. That should please the member for Lyons.

Mr Albanese: Mr Speaker—

The SPEAKER: The member for Grayndler will resume his seat. We've only just begun the answer.

Mr Albanese: I asked about his government not ours.

The SPEAKER: The member for Grayndler will contain himself at least for a little while longer. The minister has the call.

Mr McCORMACK: The Carpenters once said, 'We've only just begun.' Certainly when I say that we've only just begun I could talk about the Midland Highway in Tasmania—$400 million over 10 years and 234 jobs. That's what this government's all about: jobs. There were 403,000 jobs in infrastructure created last year—1,100 a day—and many of them full-time and many of them thanks to the good policies of the Will Hodgman government. May they be re-elected this Saturday! There's $38 million towards the Hobart International Airport runway extension. The coalition has already made a significant, $150 million, commitment to UTAS for the relocation and expansion of campuses: in Launceston, $130 million; and in Burnie, $20 million. I had dinner with Brett Whiteley last night and he was talking about the hope and optimism in Tasmania. We didn't see that when Labor were in power either federally or statewide.

That's why I say again, for Tasmanians watching this broadcast: vote 1 for the Will Hodgman government this Saturday. As part of the Hobart City Deal, the Commonwealth is working on potential innovative financing solutions to support the university's presence in the city. That should please Tasmanians. I'm sure the member for Denison, who is absent, would be pleased. But, more than that, there's the freight rail revitalisation project, with $59.8 million in government funding, and the Hobart airport interchange, with $24 million. We are ensuring less congestion and better road safety—all the things that Tasmanians want. We're doing it federally and the Will Hodgman government is doing it in the state. May he be re-elected with his very good government this Saturday.