Regional roads left to crumble with savage $172 million cuts to budget

Peter Malinauskas’ 2024-25 State Budget has shown once again that Labor does not consider regional roads a priority with huge cuts to the capital works program and minimal funding for new projects.

In last year’s Budget, $915 million was allocated for the capital program for regional roads and transport projects while this year the allocation has been cut by $172 million to $743 million.

Meanwhile, of the $310 million in new funding for regional roads, $250 million is going towards upgrades to the South Eastern Freeway between Mount Barker and the city.

Shadow Minister for Regional Roads, Adrian Pederick, said he is appalled at the lack of consideration that has been given to the regional road network.

“The Liberal Opposition’s ‘Report Your Road’ campaign has exposed the alarming condition of roads statewide,” Mr Pederick said.

“Since launching our campaign last month, we have received almost 150 road reports, many of which contain photo evidence illustrating just how bad their condition is.

“For those of us who regularly travel in our regions, the state of the road network is clearly an issue that needs more attention, but sadly city-centric Labor are more worried about big ticket events than addressing real problems being faced by real people.

“It is absolutely disgraceful that Labor is arrogantly ignoring calls from the state’s peak road body at a time when the road maintenance backlog is growing at a faster rate than roads are being fixed.”

Shadow Minister for Transport and Infrastructure, Vincent Tarzia, said the Malinauskas Labor Government must learn to walk and chew gum at the same time.

“Peter Malinauskas and Labor don’t give our regional communities the respect they deserve,” Mr Tarzia said.

“Regional budgets for crucial road upgrades and infrastructure projects aren’t just a barrel to steal from so Labor pet projects in the city can be propped up.

“We know there is a road maintenance backlog worth well over $2 billion that needs to be urgently addressed and with every day that passes, and Labor ignores this issue, the more it’s going to cost taxpayers in the long run.”

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  • Adrian Pederick