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No money has been assigned to plan the $13 billion airport rail link in the new financial year, the Andrews government's budget reveals.
Instead, it appears that the state government will be relying on the federal government’s contribution to fund the business case and further planning over the next four years.
Tim Pallas delivers the stste budget on Monday.CREDIT:JASON SOUTH
Before last year’s election, the Andrews government promised to build a rail link to the airport and agreed to match the federal government’s $5 billion contribution.
But the budget reveals that $50 million from the Morrison government will be used for the project’s business case this financial year. No state money has been set aside for the project over the forward estimates.
However, state government officials have said the $5 billion for the project has been factored into the state’s net debt.
The Andrews government has been forced to do away with big-ticket funding injections from the federal Labor Party following this month’s shock election result.
Outgoing Labor leader Bill Shorten had promised $2 billion for the Metro Tunnel if the ALP won the election, which Premier Daniel Andrews had planned to splash on other transport project.
Mr Shorten had also pledged a whopping $10 billion for the suburban rail loop but it appears that Labor’s unexpected loss has thrown a last-minute spanner in those works.
This article first appeared on www.theage.com.au
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