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Mr M. J. Ferguson, pursuant to notice, moved—That this House:

(1) condemns the Howard Government's seven years of disinterest and denial on public transport as evidenced by its:

 (a) decision to add a Goods and Services Tax to fares;

(b) failure to address the FBT disincentives on public transport fares;

(c) failure to give urban buses a fair go under the Diesel and Alternative Fuel Grant Scheme; and

(d) stated denial of any responsibility or consideration of public transport in the Auslink Green Paper that purports to lay the groundwork for a national transport plan;

(2) notes with concern the impact of increased congestion in urban and outer urban areas on quality of life, health and access to jobs and services for Australians;

(3) emphasises the environmental gains to be made through policy measures that reduce transport emissions, especially by reducing car dependency;

(4) stresses that access to public transport is an issue in all regions, including regional towns and cities, impacting daily on access to jobs, education and services for Australians;

(5) calls on the Howard Government to release any policy option and research papers commissioned or undertaken by the Commonwealth that canvas policy measures and costs associated with tax and regulatory barriers to increasing public transport usage, including the "Cost Benefit Analysis Study for Exempting Employer-Provided Public Transportfrom Fringe Benefits Taxation" conducted by the Australian Greenhouse Office in 2002; and

(6) calls on the Howard Government to accept a role for the Commonwealth in relation to public transport and declare that role in the Auslink White Paper due to be released this year.

Debate ensued.

The time allotted for private Members' business having expired, the debate was interrupted, and the resumption of the debate made an order of the day for the next sitting.