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Thursday, 6 April 2000
Page: 15442

Mr LLOYD (2:27 PM) —My question is addressed to the Minister for Transport and Regional Services. Would the minister outline to the House the benefits of the Commonwealth government's black spot road funding program? Is the minister aware of any impediments to the successful implementation of this program?

Mr ANDERSON (Deputy Prime Minister) —I thank the honourable member for his question. The member for Robertson would well understand the nature of the Black Spot Program. While the government provided $500,000 to rectify an accident black spot on a road in your electorate, the New South Wales Labor government would not contribute, even though it was their road. They stayed right out of it. They contributed nothing to fixing the hazard, and the road is their responsibility. They walked away from it. It is not just the New South Wales state Labor government that walk away from the Black Spot Program; the federal Labor Party are just as bad. They abandoned it altogether when they were in government.

We introduced this package in 1996, after Labor had abandoned it, to reduce road trauma across Australia. Since then, a total of no fewer than 1,490 programs have been funded at an estimated value of $156 million. It is worth illustrating this to demonstrate that it is of value to Australians living in electorates right across the nation. For example, in the year 2000-01 Black Spot Program, we see the electorate of Paterson benefiting.

Mr Horne —Ripper!

Mr ANDERSON —Ripper! Great, he says. He welcomes that announcement for a black spot program at Tamango Road and the Pacific Highway, where there were 11 casualty crashes over six years. But, if Labor were in government, it would not be fixed. The black spot would have fallen into a Labor Party black hole. In the electorate of Hunter—we had an interjection a moment ago from the member for Hunter—we have given $450,000 to fix an accident black spot on the Golden Highway where there have been six casualty crashes in one year, surely a tragedy. If the Labor Party were in government, the electorate of Hunter would have missed out too. In the electorate of Capricornia, which has really benefited from some worthwhile infrastructure expenditure by the government in recent times, we have given $50,000 to fix an accident black spot where there have been three casualty crashes in three years. If the Labor Party were in government, they would have missed out. In the electorate of McMillan, we have given $290,000 to fix a spot at Bunyip Road, Hope Street and Cemetery Lane where 13 casualty crashes occurred in five years—again, nothing would have happened if the ALP had been in power. In other words, we get rid of dangerous black spots, whereas the Labor Party just gets rid of the black spots program.