Following the release of the Eyre Peninsula Freight study and announcement of funding secured for SA infrastructure, Senator for South Australia Rex Patrick is calling the government out on abandoning the people on the EP.
The EP freight study is said to have been complete in September last year but is only just being released and available to the public, meaning the government was also aware the railway line was also likely to close down.
Senator Rex says the government has failed to inform the public and has made a conscious decision to leave residence of the EP in the dark.
Rex said “About a month ago I was of the view that the people of the Eyre Peninsula were ‘the forgotten people’, but it turns out they’re not. Governments have actually considered their issues and done nothing. They are ‘the abandoned people’."
The freight study, that has been reasonably hard to obtain, highlights that costs for the roads with no rail will be looking at over $95 million.
Andrea Broadfoot Centre Alliance’s candidate for Grey says the $25.6 million allocated to the Eyre Peninsula won’t be nearly enough and the investment will only be going over the top of the Eyre Peninsula focusing on the Port Augusta to Perth Corridor, which ultimately neglects the rest of the region where the main concern lays.
Andrea said, “Eyre Peninsula people and communities have been abandoned by the government on this issue and it’s really disappointing to see there isn’t a plan and we’re calling for there to be a plan.”
“The Eyre Peninsula produces 33% of the state’s grain and 90% of the state's seafood, we’re a highly productive agricultural primary production region and we have not been catered for in the government planning when it comes to road and freight infrastructure.
“The Freight Study is a great report, because it’s taken into account a whole range of factors and despite knowing that the implications were that the rail was probably not going to be continued because of the commercial relationship between GWA and Viterra, it’s come out with what it’s thought is the bestout comee and that is that we maintain some rail.“ said Andrea.
Locals can find the freight study here: