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Wednesday, 15 February 2017
Page: 1227

Mr MORTON (Tangney) (19:54): Elections are about choices. The WA state election in March will be one of the most important elections for decades. Western Australians will be able to decide whether Roe 8 and Roe 9 construction continues under the Liberal Party or whether the project is cancelled under the Labor Party. There is a lot at stake for our community south of the river. Our local roads are becoming more congested with cars and trucks. The Liberal Party is taking action to make our local roads safer and create up to 10, 000 jobs. The Liberal Party is building the long-awaited and desperately needed Roe 8 and Roe 9 as part of the Perth Freight Link. Labor has sided with the Greens and the protesters. Labor will tear up the contracts and Labor will cancel up to 10,000 local jobs for Western Australians. Now more than ever, WA needs Roe 8 and Roe 9 and local jobs. Now is not the time for Labor to cut WA jobs.

Roe 8 and Roe 9 are recognised by Infrastructure Australia as being part of one of the highest transport priorities in Australia. Roe 8 and 9 will bypass 14 sets of traffic lights on Leach Highway and Stock Road. Roe 8 and 9 will remove approximately 7,000 trucks and 74,000 cars each day from Leach Highway, Farrington Road, South Street, Stock Road, North Lake Road, Beeliar Drive and other local roads. And, despite the lies and misinformation from Labor and the protesters, cars will not pay any tolls to use Roe 8 or Roe 9.

Roe 8 and 9 are also leading the way in environmental design. Construction of Roe 8 impacts only 0.49 per cent of the entire Beeliar Wetlands. That is less than one per cent. Roe 8 and 9 are expected to save 450,000 tons of CO2 by 2031. Construction is on land already partly cleared for overhead power lines. Wetlands Bridges over Roe Swamp and Horse Paddock Swamp will maintain ecological connections for native animals. More than $45 million has been invested in Roe 8 alone to specifically accommodate environmental sensitivities and to provide better recreational access. In partnership, the federal Liberal government and state Liberal government are investing $1.9 billion in this critical infrastructure south of the river.

But what is Labor's position? Labor has sided with the Greens and the protestors against the construction of Roe 8 and Roe 9. Labor will tear up the contracts, cancel construction and Labor will cancel the up to 10,000 jobs the project will create. One point two billion dollars of the project's funding is being provided by the federal government. These funds are provided for this project and this project alone. Labor's reckless decision will deny Western Australians a $1.2 billion federal government investment in infrastructure. Labor's reckless decision will deny Western Australians jobs. Labor's reckless decision will make our south-of-the-river community less safe and more congested. But most concerning is that Labor has said that, if they had access to those infrastructure funds, they would move them out of our local south-of-the-river community and divert them to their marginal seat promises, like those north of the river, including upgrades to Ocean Reef Road and Joondalup Drive. To be very clear: Labor wants to take away funds committed to our community south of the river to fund their marginal seat election commitments elsewhere.

This election we can make a difference. We can take a stand for the southern suburbs. We can say that enough is enough and now is not the time to lose infrastructure investment in our southern suburbs. So this is your choice: you can vote for Labor or the Greens and you can stop the project, you can stop the jobs and you can keep the trucks and cars on our local roads or you can vote for your local Liberal candidate. By voting for your local Liberal candidate, you will be saying yes to making our streets safer and less congested; you will be saying yes to keeping the up to 10,000 jobs created by Roe 8 and Roe 9; you will be saying yes to freeway access east and west across our city; and you will be saying, 'Yes, the south-of-the-river community does matter.' Only the Liberals will build Roe 8 and Roe 9.

House adjourned at 19:59