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Baldock pleased with Tauranga Link progress

Friday, 17 December 2004

Baldock pleased with Tauranga Link progress

United Future Transport spokesman, Larry Baldock, a resident of Tauranga, welcomed the announcement today that the consultation process for the new harbour link proposal is able to get under way.

“After much discussion and negotiation, it will now be time for Tauranga residents to be presented with all the information and to make their decision.

“The proposal to part-fund the harbour link with tolls and a substantial contribution from the national Land Transport Fund is only possible,” Mr Baldock points out, “because of United Future’s work on the legislation to allow tolling to occur on the existing bridge if the Tauranga community agreed with that approach.

“While our attention is certainly focussed on the harbour link project because it is a congestion point within our city, it is important we recognise this is only one of the major projects which need to be constructed over the next ten years and I will be continuing to work for funding options over the whole range of projects, amounting to almost $650 million.

“Those who are criticizing Government proposals to toll the bridge and avoid making a contribution ought to be silenced by the 50 percent contribution coming from the National Transport Fund.

“It is simply a matter of whether we want the bridge built now or later, and whether we want to use all of the available money to Tauranga on one project rather than also having the ability to advance other much-needed construction projects.

“I have confidence that the people of Tauranga will reject any shallow approach to this issue and will discuss the issue thoroughly and make an informed decision in the New Year.

“I am pleased to have played my part in assisting the Council and Government agencies in arriving at this point,” said Mr Baldock.


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