Shadow Minister backs increased Roads to Recovery funding

Shadow Local Government Minister Darren Chester’s support for increasing Roads to Recovery funding to $800 million per year has been welcomed by ALGA.

Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Mr Chester said: “The Australian Local Government Association is asking this Labor government to continue to support the Roads to Recovery Program and give additional funding going forward, recognising the escalation in costs that are incurred in doing roadworks. They are asking for an extra $300 million per year. I call on the Minister to take this request seriously.”

ALGA President Councillor Linda Scott said it was encouraging to see Mr Chester fighting for councils impacted by the recent natural disasters that have devastated local roads across the nation.

“The flooding, fires and cyclones we’ve seen over the past few years are unprecedented.  What we need now is unprecedented funding – not just to repair our roads but to strengthen them for future events,” Cr Scott said.

Cr Scott said while councils appreciated the significant Federal Government support they receive, an increase in Roads to Recovery funding from $500 million to $800 million per year is urgently needed to help invest in new technologies and build more resilient roads.

“Considering the ongoing impacts of climate change, we can’t simply rebuild our local infrastructure to current standards – what we need is a fundamental shift in the way we fund, deliver and maintain these assets,” Cr Scott said.

“This will also help councils to deliver safer roads into the future and support increased national productivity.”