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!