A Labor government will end the mismanagement, incompetence and waste that have been the hallmarks of the Liberal and National Government’s major infrastructure projects.
Labor announced a judicial inquiry into WestConnex and the Sydney Light Rail as part of its four-point plan to end the blowouts and secrecy that have underscored the Liberal and National Government projects.
In 2012 Westconnex was a $10 billion road project to connect Western Sydney to Sydney Airport and Port Botany, but six years on the cost has blown out to at least $17 billion and it doesn’t go to the Port or the Sydney Airport as promised.
Western Sydney has been stung with a new M4 toll, property owners have been treated with contempt and the Sydney Motorway Corporation has been used to shield WestConnex from public scrutiny.
The Sydney Light Rail is the Premier’s personal vanity project – but is more than a year late and at least $500 million over budget. Small businesses are going broke as the Government is sued for “deceptive and misleading conduct".
The Auditor General found that the NSW Government “did not effectively plan and procure the CBD Light Rail project to ensure it maximised value for money for New South Wales".
Labor’s four-point plan will combat mismanagement, incompetence and waste and includes:
- A judicial inquiry into WestConnex and the Sydney Light Rail to establish exactly how these projects have gone so wrong and provide full public accountability.
- A pledge to never use secretive vehicles like the Sydney Motorway Corporation (the front company for the State Government that is delivering WestConnex) which was established specifically to dodge freedom of information laws.
- No construction contracts will ever be signed before planning approvals have been received, as has been the case with the Westconnex and Sydney Light Rail.
- New legislation will require Infrastructure NSW to provide annual ‘health checks’ on the progress of major projects and publish their findings.