THE HON MICHAEL DANBY MP
SHADOW PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY TO THE LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION,
SHADOW PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY FOR THE ARTS
MEMBER FOR MELBOURNE PORTS
Mr DANBY (Melbourne Ports) : Over the next five years Victoria is slated to receive just eight per cent of the $19.8 billion the Abbott government will invest in road and rail infrastructure.
Compare that to the 39 per cent share that New South Wales will receive. Indeed, in the coming years Victoria’s share of the Commonwealth’s National Partnership Payment scheme will drop to just 12 per cent, despite the fact that my state has a quarter of Australia’s population.
Is it because Victorian cabinet ministers, such as the members for Kooyong, Menzies and Goldstein, are not able to stand up to their Sydney-based colleagues who seem to run this government? Or is Victoria being punished for being the only state to elect more Labor than coalition MPs?
The Age newspaper—a newspaper I do not cite very often—did say that Victoria will get 19 per cent of the Commonwealth National Partnership payments and this will drop to 12 per cent over the next four years—less than half of Victoria’s population share. I think the way Victoria is being treated is very inequitable. The figures are indisputable, particularly in infrastructure. I realise we are in the middle of the political stoush that will eventually be resolved, but there is no other conclusion one can come to than that Victoria is being punished for electing a government that is unacceptable to the current federal government.