SA-BEST pledges support for duplication of Victor Harbor Road
Federal Member for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie has applauded SA-BEST’s promise to back the duplication of the Victor Harbor Road.
“As our SA-BEST leader Nick Xenophon said, ‘Let’s do it. This is long overdue’,” Rebekha said after the Party’s new policy was announced on Monday.
“If the Victor Harbor Road was in any other State in Australia, it would have been upgraded to a dual-lane road long before now.
“I welcome the RAA’s ‘Road Champions’ SA Election campaign that is pushing for the duplication of this notoriously dangerous transport corridor, and I am pleased that SA-BEST is on board to do something about it.
“In the meantime, I will advocate to ensure the Federal Government makes this road part of National Highway One and contributes to this major infrastructure project.”
Nick says the Victor Harbor Road is a deadly stretch of highway that needs to be “fixed ASAP”.
“But it has to be done smartly and efficiently without the massive cost blowouts of so many other Government projects,” he said.
“SA-BEST is all about getting maximum value for our taxpayer dollars, so that more projects, like this, can be given priority.”
Upgrading the Victor Harbor Road was one of the first issues Rebekha raised in Federal Parliament after being elected. It is a project she has advocated for with both Federal and State Transport Ministers.
Rebekha called on the Federal Government to make the road a priority in November 2016 when SA Liberal MP Nicolle Flint introduced a motion noting the Government’s $500 million spend on the Black Spot Program over four years.
“Statistics from recent years show there is a crash causing damage or injury on the Victor Harbor Road every week,’ Rebekha said.
“Unfortunately, it is also one of the deadliest roads in the State.
“These statistics are shocking; but, unfortunately, they are familiar and they are only going to continue with population growth and tourism opportunities driving even more traffic along this corridor.
“The RAA has reported a 34 per cent increase in traffic on the Victor Harbor Road over the five years.”
NXT was instrumental in reinstating supplementary local road grants for SA councils in the 2017/18 Federal Budget.
The agreement pours $40 million into Local Government roads over the next two years, restoring more than $2.3 million a year to councils in Mayo.
“By taking the some of the road funding pressure from our councils and encouraging more investment in local road upgrades, I hope any future SA Government will now turn its attention to upgrading its own road infrastructure including the Victor Harbor Road,” Rebekha said.
“Restoring supplementary local road funding was an important step, but I will also continue to advocate for the Federal Government to review its poor funding record in our State.
“South Australia has 11.8 per cent of the nation's local road network and 7.1 per cent of the population and yet it was only receiving less than five per cent of total federal funding towards land transport infrastructure projects.”