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Transmission decision needs facts not guesses

Transmission decision needs facts not guesses

Stephen Franks Wednesday, 6 July 2005

Press Releases - Transport

Wellington-based ACT MP Stephen Franks today endorsed Peter Dunne's criticism of the deal between Labour and the Wellington Regional Council to can the Transmission Gully project, but asked why he had left it until now do something.

“United Future has been Labour’s obedient parliamentary poodle for three years. They’ve voted many times for things they say they don't like because that was their side of the deal with Labour. Why did Mr Dunne not insist on at least a proper Transmission Gully costing as a quid pro quo?

“The Regional Council says Transmission Gully is too expensive and tolling won't meet the cost, but they are working off geo-technical and engineering guesses with a plus or minus range of $400 million. At the very least they should spend enough money to know exactly what the rock conditions and slumping risks are, so that the cost comparisons are genuine.

“We should know too what a genuine tolling return might be.

“If Transmission Gully is to be tolled then why should motorists on the Centennial Highway get off scot free when they will reap the benefits of an uncongested road out of Wellington?

“Mr Dunne's useless politicking now should be seen for what it is. The Wellington region has been treated with scorn because Labour and United Future have had it sewn up. Wellington has had four Cabinet ministers, two Labour backbenchers and two United Future poodle MPs, and still not enough clout to even get definitive costings for Transmission Gully.

“Yesterday's announcement was a reminder of the low aspirations Labour and United Future have for this country. Instead of building for the future they opt for second-best, second world infrastructure, without even knowing what the best would actually cost,” Mr Franks said.


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