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Southerner Facts Are Unsurprising

Southerner Facts Are Unsurprising

Friday 7 Dec 2001 Penny Webster Press Releases -- Transport

Jim Anderton's response that the Southerner viability study is `startling' shows how out of touch he is, ACT Transport Spokesman MP Penny Webster said today.

"It is absolutely no surprise that three times as many people hire cars to go to Invercargill as use the Southerner. The rail service is slow, uncomfortable and inconvenient.

"The study showing the Southerner passenger rail service would need a ninety per cent increase in passengers to have any chance of becoming viable is completely unsurprising to me.

"The Deputy Prime Minister committed $240,000 to the service because of `the potential regional development benefits', yet commonsense should have shown that the loss of the Southerner would have a negligible impact on the region.

"I have said all along that the Government should never have committed the money it did. Hopefully now the Greens will respond to this report by dropping their unrealistic cries for the Southerner to be funded by the taxpayer," Mrs Webster said.

For more information visit ACT online at http://www.act.org.nz or contact the ACT Parliamentary Office at act@parliament.govt.nz.

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