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VICTORIANS have been told to expect some surprises in today’s state Budget with Premier Daniel Andrews refusing to be drawn on any new taxes or charges.
Treasurer Tim Pallas will deliver the re-elected Labor Government’s four-year fiscal plan today after it was delayed for a month due to the federal election.
Geelong residents have already been told to expect millions to be set aside for planning to deliver fast rail to Geelong and Ballarat.
The 2019/2020 budget will see $100 million invested to deliver the detailed planning and design works to deliver the full separation of regional and metro service on the Geelong and Ballarat lines.
Mr Andrews insists there will be new items in the Budget as well as pledges made before the election.
However, he would not be drawn on any new taxes or charges.
“There’ll be some new things there and I’ll let the treasurer announce it in due course on Monday,” he said.
Infrastructure funding continues to be a point of friction between the Morrison and Andrews governments.
The Federal Government has promised $4 billion to build Melbourne’s dumped East West Link.
But Lara MP John Eren said the State Government refused to consent to the project, which he said was not viable enough.
“We’re very clear on that, it’s a project that does not stack up and it hasn’t stacked up since we looked at it last,” Mr Eren said. “We went to two elections on the East West and we won both of them resoundingly.
“We’ve got a plan that the people obviously liked. We hope they (Morrison) will work with the State Government in relation to those very important projects.”
Mr Eren said Victoria had a quarter of the nation’s population but its infrastructure share of funding from Canberra was down to 7 per cent.
This article first appeared on www.geelongadvertiser.com.au
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