With only days until the 2022 Federal Election, the Sunshine Coast Business Council is seeking answers from both the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Anthony Albanese and Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk to give voters clarity on their party’s commitment to the Brisbane to Sunshine Coast (Beerwah to Maroochydore) rail extension.
Sunshine Business Council Chair Sandy Zubrinich said letters penned to both leaders almost three weeks ago had remained unanswered, denying voters the opportunity to make an informed decision when it comes to proposed infrastructure investment into the region.
“After many years of tirelessly advocating for heavy rail into the Sunshine Coast’s Maroochydore CBD, the Federal Government’s $1.6 billion funding commitment towards the realisation of this much-needed infrastructure was welcomed by business leaders across the region last month,” Ms Zubrinich said.
“However, for this essential infrastructure to come to fruition, there remains a requirement for the Queensland Government to match this funding and to date there has been no commitment to make this new passenger heavy rail along the CAMCOS corridor a reality.
“Voters also have a right to know — before they cast their vote on Saturday — whether the Opposition intends to honour the $1.6 billion funding commitment should they come to power.
“It is very disappointing that our letter to Mr Albanese’s office remains unacknowledged and while the Queensland Premier acknowledged receipt and indicated our correspondence had been passed on to Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mr Mark Bailey — who was also copied into the original letter — a response has not been forthcoming.
“All levels of government will need to collaborate on this and other infrastructure projects and it is encouraging that our local business leaders stand united as we continue to advocate for essential infrastructure to respond to our anticipated population growth of more than 40 per cent by 2041.
“The Sunshine Coast has long experienced a deficit in state infrastructure funding and we need all three tiers of government to identify and commit to projects that will address regional issues such as unlocking land, addressing housing affordability and providing the broad infrastructure required to support a growing population including in areas such as water supply, sewerage – not just transport.
The Sunshine Coast Business Council is the leading regional business advocacy group on the Sunshine Coast. It represents approximately 4,000 businesses through its membership, which includes key national and regional industry groups and their members as well as national and regional businesses.
For more information please visit www.scbusinesscouncil.com.au.
Media contact : Maya Gurry, Fresh PR & Marketing
P: 0410 109 102 E: firstname.lastname@example.org