Rail investment putting safety improvements at risk

The Government is putting regional roading projects and important safety improvements across the country at risk by raiding the National Land Transport Fund to invest more in rail, National’s Transport spokesperson Michael Woodhouse says.

“Kiwis across the country have been paying more at the pump in fuel taxes they thought were going to be spent on important road safety improvements and much-needed upgrades.

“Instead Transport Minister Michael Wood is raiding that fund to heap more money into rail projects meaning there will be less money for roads.

“National supports a multi-modal approach to transport. We’ve always invested heavily in rail and public transport, but we funded rail directly from the Crown.

“The previous National Government funded the City Rail Link directly. We didn’t redirect funds away from key safety improvements to prop up rail like Labour is doing.

“Labour is also raiding the kitty to pay for Light Rail, if it ever gets off the ground. Continuing to spend road user money on rail projects means there’s no money for a second harbour cross or Let’s Get Wellington Moving.

“At the same time the Government is backtracking its commitment to funding much needed transport infrastructure projects across the country, with roads like Ōtaki to North of Levin, Mill Road and Melling Interchange all at risk.

“Labour should fund rail commitments directly, making sure fuel taxes can pay for much needed roading improvements.”