Labor rips $6.5 million hole in Mitchell Shire
22 May 2015
Labor has ripped a $6.5 million dollar hole in Mitchell Shire’s budget, Member for Euroa and Deputy Leader of The Nationals Steph Ryan said today.
Ms Ryan said Mitchell Shire would be one of the worst to suffer under Labor’s State Budget, announced last week.
“To plug the gaping hole left by Labor’s first budget, rates in the shire would need to rise dramatically, Ms Ryan said.
“The Shire’s population base simply cannot afford that kind of increase.
“The alternative council is left with is to run down the council asset base and to stop maintaining roads and other important infrastructure.
“The Labor Government has left council with a poison pill.”
Ms Ryan said in addition to scrapping the $160 million Country Roads and Bridges Program, Labor had slashed the roads asset management budget by almost 10 per cent.
“For a shire like Mitchell which has 60 bridges and 158 culverts to maintain, this is disastrous,” Ms Ryan said.
“The Local Government Infrastructure Program and Regional Living Expo have also been discontinued.”
Labor is also investing staggeringly little into regional infrastructure.
“A mere 2.9 per cent of infrastructure spending in this year’s Budget is being invested into regional Victoria, Ms Ryan said.
“That 2.9 per cent includes Geelong and other regional cities.
“This complete lack of regard for country Victorians further reinforces the fact that Labor only care about you if you live in Melbourne.”