March 7, 2018  |  

MINISTERS STATEMENTS: Hurstbridge rail line

Mr CARROLL (Minister for Industry and Employment) (11:40:12) — It is my pleasure to update the house on the 44‑day construction blitz by the Andrews Labor government on the $395 million Hurstbridge line upgrade. Last month I had the honour of joining, in hard hats and vests, the member for Ivanhoe, the member for Yan Yean and the hardworking parliamentary secretary to me, who is doing an outstanding job, the member for Eltham. Up to 1000 workers and up to 60 apprentices will be working around the clock over six weeks to remove not one but two level crossings at Alphington and Rosanna. They will also duplicate the single track to get mums and dads and students home more quickly on the Heidelberg and Rosanna line, which will also see new timetables for the South Morang and Hurstbridge lines as well as a new Rosanna train station. I know the member for Ivanhoe cannot wait for its opening.

This is an outstanding program from the Andrews Labor government. But make no mistake, those opposite have a policy to stop this program stone‑dead, with their traffic light removal program to get you to the next set of traffic lights more quickly. That is what they are all proud of, but it gets better. I thought the traffic light removal program was going to be funded by the Snowy Hydro, but it is interesting that, if you pick up the Weekly Times today, to find the member for the South‑West Coast has other ideas for the Snowy Hydro. When her spokesperson was asked if she —

Mr M. O’Brien — On a point of order, Speaker, I would ask you to invite the minister in short pants to come back to making a ministerial statement.

Honourable members interjecting.

The SPEAKER (11:42:13) — Order! The member for South‑West Coast and the member for Footscray will leave the chamber for the period of 1 hour.

Honourable members for South‑West Coast and Footscray withdrew from chamber.

The SPEAKER — I apologise. I was receiving some advice from the clerks and I did not hear the ministers statement. But I do ask the minister, if he was veering from making a statement, to come back to making a ministers statement.

Mr CARROLL — Don’t they miss the member for Box Hill? The member for Malvern is correct. He is just so upset — he has got so many votes on the other side — that the member for South‑West Coast did not run the policy idea by him as the shadow Treasurer —

Honourable members interjecting.

The SPEAKER — Order!

Mr CARROLL — $395 million and up to 1000 workers — our infrastructure program is delivering in Ivanhoe, delivering in Yan Yean and delivering in Eltham. We are getting on with the job while they are making policy on the run.

Ms Ryall — On a point of order, Speaker, I refer you to adjournment debate question 13 154 that has been unanswered by the Minister for Health. It was raised on 21 September 2017 and is still unanswered. I have had meetings with EACH from my community this week. I can only say I am absolutely disgusted that this answer has not been forthcoming from the minister. It actually shows contempt for the people who are waiting for dental treatment in my community. I asked that it be provided immediately.

The SPEAKER — I thank the member for raising that issue. I am certain that we have written to the minister seeking a response.

Mr Wells — On a point of order, Speaker, I refer to constituency question 13 389 that I raised on 31 October last year — can you believe it — in regard to police and protective services officers. I ask you to request the minister to provide a response.

The SPEAKER — I thank the member for raising that issue. It will be brought forward.