Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Funds for Goat Track

Newspaper article The Queensland Times (Ipswich, Australia)

Funds for Goat Track

Article excerpt

Byline: Adam Davies

THE Ipswich Motorway upgrade between Rocklea and Darra is set to become a reality after the state government agreed to fund its share of the project's cost.

The federal government had previously committed $279 million towards the project but negotiations broke down after both parties could not agree on the funding split.

The former federal Labor government offered a 50:50 split but the then LNP state government wanted the historical 80:20 split.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said on Wednesday the government had agreed to work with the federal government to ensure the project became a reality.

She said her government would commit $200 million towards the project which represents about 50% of the overall cost.

"This is an enormous step in seeing this project move forward, and means relief is in sight for motorway users who currently face mass congestion in peak times," she said.

"We know upgrading the Ipswich Motorway is crucial to ease congestion for both motorists and road freight.

"We have got our money on the table, ready to go - now we just need the federal government to step up and match our commitment."

The Palaszczuk Government has continually claimed the federal funding has been removed off the table.

Federal Infrastructure Minister Darren Chester said in a statement to the QT this was never the case.

He said the funding had always been available should the Palaszczauk Government commit funds towards its share of the project.

"The Australian Government component of funding for this project has been on the table since the Queensland Labor Government came to power in 2015, but it has refused to match our commitment," he said.

"Since September last year, when my predecessor Warren Truss reiterated to Queensland Roads Minister Mark Bailey that the Australian Government would provide funding for 50% of the project, Queensland Labor has been silent. …

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