Residents at ‘breaking point’ on Barton issue

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I am one of those annoying constituents that Angus Taylor accused in last Friday’s Trib of “wanting a rolled gold duplication and for taxpayers to fund the lot”. So shoot me Angus.

Heaven forbid I should want something in return for the tens of thousands of dollars I pay in tax each and every year. Need I remind you that not one dollar of taxpayers money has been spent on anything significant in the Yass Valley in the last 25 years – since the highway bypass was built.

If I am wrong, then point me to the building or infrastructure that shows where this mythical government expenditure has been lavished? And don’t point me to Yass Dam, because I refuse to be told I should be grateful for a regular water supply in a first world country like Australia.

I would like to commend Phil and Sophie Wade and family, and the many others over such a long time who have been a sensible community voice campaigning hard on this issue. But their good work has again been ignored.

The recent RMS Report [Barton Highway Draft Improvement Strategy] is our breaking point. We have had enough of the charade of government and Angus [Taylor] and Pru [Goward] trying to convince us that a staged (ie. bandaid) solution is the best solution. As they drive down their dual lane carriageways from Goulburn to Canberra and Sydney every sitting period, they have seriously underestimated the level of community anger now.

In the context of the likely electorate boundary change in March that will, hopefully, make Yass more marginal, I look forward to meeting with future candidates to secure promises of full funding and delivery of the duplication within three years.

This is not unrealistic. We have all seen money appear out of thin air when there is political will or electoral desperation.

Building 33 km of dual road was possible for the M7 in western Sydney (Feb 2002 to Dec 2005), so why not for country people? A duplication won’t just benefit Yass, but also Boorowa, Harden, Cowra, Gundagai, Wagga Wagga etc. All those nearby hardworking country tax payers who also need to travel to Canberra safely for work, uni, medical appointments, or whatever.

We should ignore what the RMS and our local members say. The RMS report was a forgone conclusion for a safe conservative seat.

As were all most of the previous reports we’ve endured. The technical planning is done. The community consultation is done. All that is needed now is political will or desperation; and a construction tender.

Most workers in Australia expect to get home to their families every day. For me and other commuters on the Barton, that is not a forgone conclusion. I’m about to hit the road again from the City to home, in the wet, on dark. My husband and three little girls are waiting for me.

Many thanks,

Bec Duncan

YASS  NSW  2582


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