Freo's View


Posted in elections, fremantle, perth freight link, politics, western australia by freoview on January 5, 2017



It’s election time so we can expect a lot of promises from all political parties, but I believe some words of caution are due, because many promises made by politicians in the past never eventuated.

Everyone who knows me knows I am strongly against building the Roe 8 highway and the Perth Freight Link because it will not solve the traffic problems to Fremantle Port. I am all for starting to plan the outer harbour that will be needed in years to come, but will Labor leader Mark McGowan be able to keep his promises and not build the PFL or will he discover, if he gets into power, that the state of Western Australia is so broke that there is no money for the outer harbour, Metronet, and other major projects he wants to build?

Will McGowan have to admit that stopping the Roe 8, after three months of frantic work on it by the State Government contractors, is going to be too costly and we can’t afford it?

Liberal party supporters will tell you that the Barnett government has done very well in investing in infrastructure, but opponents ask if Elizabeth Quay was really needed and if it is good value for money. They will rightly question the huge expense of the footbridge to the new Burswood stadium and a new train station there that will only operate during sporting matches and events, so probably only 25 times a year. Opponents will say they squandered state money disgracefully and I tend to agree.

I suggest to take promises from every politician with a huge grain of sand over the next three months, because whoever wins power will tell us they were not aware that the coffers of the state are so depleted that we can’t afford major infrastructure.

As far as the Liberals claim that jobs will be lost if the PFL is not built , surely the bridges, Metronet and outer harbour Labor promises to build will also give thousands of people work, just on different projects.

Don’t get sucked in by political populist promises because the pot of gold is missing to fulfil them all!

Roel Loopers

10 Responses

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  1. Lionel said, on January 8, 2017 at 7:40 pm

    Paul – the Labor party has only committed to planning the outer harbour, they haven’t committed to building it. My point is that promising to plan something is a meaningless gesture.

  2. freoview said, on January 8, 2017 at 11:03 am

    I want to see very detailed plans that have been properly costed and opposition and government telling us what the, let’s say, five priority projects are for the first term which they will not abandon at any cost and for whatever reason.


  3. freoishome said, on January 8, 2017 at 8:50 am

    Like planning to extend the metro rail north, to building a rail link to the airport, to light rail, etc, means nothing! Planning to build new hospitals, schools and sport facilities for a target price means nothing. Planning to be strong on crime means nothing. Planning to be strong on domestic violence means nothing! Planning to reduce the GST contribution means nothing. Planning to reduce the deficit means nothing. Planning to…..
    Only when you are in government can you do anything other than plan. Then, depending on the political and financial situation you may then be able to turn plans into action. But, even then it isn’t a given, the political situation may be that you can’t get it through both houses, the finances may require giving some things higher priority, unplanned but more important situations may arise, usually do, which put back plans.
    Does this mean you should not plan? What do you expect oppositions parties to do during elections other than outline plans?

  4. Lionel said, on January 7, 2017 at 7:16 pm

    Agree – planning a harbour means nothing. Committing to building one is a different thing

  5. freoview said, on January 7, 2017 at 9:21 am

    Planning for an outer harbour of some kind has been going on forever. I remember when I was still the preferred photographer for Fremantle Ports some ten years ago that a container island was announced and planned. I am a sceptic when it comes to these promises, no matter from which party.


  6. freoview said, on January 7, 2017 at 9:19 am

    Happy New Year to you and the family Mark. I hope your international job is all working out well for you!


  7. Mark said, on January 7, 2017 at 8:27 am

    Roel that’s the most balanced article I have read from you
    Happy New Year😀

    Sadly 2027 election will probably full of hollow promises from all the mayor parties

  8. Lionel said, on January 6, 2017 at 9:58 pm

    Labor has not promised to build an outer harbour – they have only committed to start the planning of one. Just more weasel words.

  9. Pete said, on January 6, 2017 at 10:20 am

    Dont forget that the Stadium Station will also be used for about 50 days of Belmont Park horse racing per year. There are also plans afoot to develop part of the land owned by the WA Turf Club … this would include residential development.

  10. Murray Slavin said, on January 6, 2017 at 10:03 am

    I don’t for a minute believe the ALP will stand by their word. It’s very easy for populist promises to be made that can be readily changed due to ‘new information’ once in office. This is typical of all sides of politics. What I would like to see is our representatives put their jobs on the line if they can’t stop Roe 8.

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