Michael Sukkar MP

Federal Member for Deakin
Shadow Minister for Social Services
Shadow Minister for the NDIS
Shadow Minister for Housing
Shadow Minister for Homelessness
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Constituency Statement: East West Link & Melbourne Traffic

It’s clear that Labor has deserted the eastern suburbs of Melbourne. We all know that Labor spent $1.3 billion of taxpayers’ money to cancel the East West Link, and all we’ve seen since that time is traffic on the Eastern Freeway getting worse and worse by the week. That’s why this federal government has $3 billion on the table to build the East West Link. Now we’re hearing from Labor plans to toll the existing sections of the Eastern Freeway. Labor is now considering tolling a road that we’ve used for 40 years—in addition to spending $1.3 billion of taxpayers’ money not to build the East West Link.

We read today on the front page of the Herald Sun the headline, ‘Road rage: Proof our traffic is getting worse’. The reason that the Herald Sun ran this article today is that the Labor Party has been clinging onto a report from the Grattan Institute that says nothing to see here—apparently, traffic in Melbourne and our suburbs is fine. We’re here to tell the Labor Party that it’s not. We need to build the East West Link. That’s why we have $3 billion on the table and, in addition, this government is spending money to pick up the slack where the Labor state government isn’t. That’s why I committed $8 million to upgrade the Maroondah Highway, Dorset Road, Exeter Road intersection—works have commenced—in addition to $1.2 million for safety upgrades on Canterbury Road in Heathmont. We know that traffic on our roads needs to improve, and that’s why we are investing in projects like the East West Link and other local road projects.

Click here to access a PDF copy of the Hansard transcript of this speech.