NSW Regional Transport Minister Sam Farraway says that a re-elected Liberal and Nationals Government will invest $300 million for the establishment of a Fast Tracking Freight program.
Farraway announced the industry election sweetener at the National Road Freighters Association (NRFA) Annual Conference in Wagga Wagga on Saturday, February 11.
“Our plan will keep our state moving forward by tackling freight pinch points on the road and rail network, better connecting road and rail with key and emerging freight hubs and increase the capacity and strengthen our supply chain,” promised Farraway.
If successful at the NSW polls on March 25, a re-elected Liberal and Nationals Government will invest a total of $1 billion in the regions to “upgrade the roads communities use every day, fast-track freight and rebuild transport infrastructure after disaster.”
Farraway said that on the back of the pandemic and recent floods forward thinking was needed to strengthen the state’s supply chain.
“Betterment isn’t a last minute thought bubble or cash splash. This has been a 12-month journey since I signed the first co-funded betterment pilot in the country to rebuild infrastructure in the northern NSW post floods,” Farraway said.
“This is what the community expects and this is the policy direction we need to move in when it comes to disaster recovery.
“International studies have shown for every $1 spent on mitigation, you save $10 in recovery. A NSW Liberal and Nationals Government will invest that dollar now when others won’t, because we are serious about delivering the projects that matter to regional communities.
“Freight is worth $66 billion a year to the NSW economy and the freight task is only growing.
“Our new Fast Tracking Freight program will make it easier for rail freight projects to get off the ground and get our food and fibre from paddock to port.”
The funding commitment also includes:
- A $400 million injection for Fixing Local Roads to help regional councils continue their work to repair, maintain and seal the roads their communities use every day.
- $300 million for a Build Back Better program to invest in more resilient state, regional and local road and transport infrastructure across regional NSW.
Earlier in the conference, the NRFA elected its 2023 executives at its annual general meeting:
President: Rod Hannifey.
Vice president: Glyn Castanelli.
National treasurer: Craig Forsyth.
National secretary: Trevor Warner.
Board members: Mark Brown, Mark Reynolds, Adam Craig, Chris Roe, Glenn Kendall, Marcus Cosgrove, Julie Downey, Louise Smith, and Kieran Woods.