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Andrew again betrays Wakefield motorists on petrol.

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Andrew Again Betrays Wakefield Motorists On Petrol Simon Crean, Shadow Treasurer, and Martin Ferguson, Shadow Minister for Transport and Regional Development

Joint Media Statement - 6 February 2001

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The Member for Wakefield, Neil Andrew, has again betrayed people in regional Australia when he voted today to block consideration of a Labor Private Member's Bill that could have saved motorists nearly two cents a litre on the price of petrol.

At home in his electorate, Mr Andrew has supported the need for petrol price relief, but when it came to the crunch in Canberra, he squibbed it and along with every Coalition member, meekly fell into line behind the Prime Minister.

Mr Andrew and his Coalition colleagues didn't even have the guts to debate Labor's Bill. If they had supported it, motorists across Australia would have looked forward to some relief from high petrol prices.

Through this inaction, Neil Andrew has shown that he supports the GST and its horrendous effect on the price of petrol and just about everything else that is used by hardworking Australian families in regional Australia.

By refusing to help make the new taxation system simpler and fairer, Mr Andrew has failed his local community.

The Prime Minister was dishonest with the Australian people with his broken petrol promise. The Government is currently reaping a fuel tax windfall that has been estimated by the AAA to be up to $1.5 billion in this financial year alone.

Fuel tax increased on 1 July 2000 when the GST was introduced because the excise was not cut by an equivalent amount of the GST.

The Treasurer also admitted on ABC Radio on Thursday 1 February that most of the excise rise was due to the GST.

The cost of travelling is getting tougher for Australian families and businesses, and the Howard-Anderson Government continues to do nothing about it.

Labor's Bill would stop the Government further breaching its commitment that the price of petrol would not increase because of the GST.

Authorised by Geoff Walsh, 19 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600.