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Proposal to introduce tolls on M5 East motorway slammed

Posted 22 March 2012 by (Hurstville News)

Mayor of Hurstville, Cr Steve McMahon has slammed the NSW Government’s proposal to introduce tolls on the M5 East motorway.

Mayor McMahon said he is outraged that local residents would be forced to pay to travel on a road that the NSW Government promised would be toll-free.

“In the lead up to last year’s State election, the O’Farrell Government never mentioned that it would expand the M5 East motorway at a massive cost to users,” he said.

“Now, 12 months down the track, it has done a complete u-turn and wants to slug motorists.

“At a time when people are already feeling the pinch from exorbitant increases in electricity and water costs, the NSW Government wants to further add to their burden and increase their commuting costs.

“Most people who use the motorway are travelling to and from work just trying to make ends meet, feed their families and pay their bills.

“If the proposal goes ahead, it is less money in their pockets for essential cost of living expenses.”

Mayor McMahon said the introduction of a toll on the M5 East motorway would also lead to gridlock on local roads throughout the Hurstville local government area.

“This will be disastrous for our local residents and motorists,” he said.

“A toll will simply result in more cars using our local streets as a rat run to the City.

“Once again, our local residents cop it and the NSW Government could not give a damn.

“I call on our local State Member, Mark Coure MP, to support the community he was elected to represent and voice our opposition to this proposal.”

Mayor McMahon said the NSW Government is treating Hurstville as Sydney’s forgotten middle child.

“During his campaign for power, Premier O’Farrell promised the people of West and North-West Sydney a range of projects whilst the people in the St George region were completely ignored,” he said.
“Despite the NSW Government’s announcement that it would widen the M5 between Camden Valley Way and King Georges Road Beverly Hills, it has refused to expand the M5 East between Beverly Hills and the City.

“Three or four lanes reduced down into two lanes equals a bottleneck at Beverly Hills.

“It is a car park now and this will just make it worse.

“To add insult to injury, under the proposal to introduce a toll, local residents will be forced to pay for the pleasure of sitting in a traffic jam.

“It is simply poor planning to leave a vital piece of the puzzle out.

“Premier Barry O’Farrell used to complain about the previous Government’s lack of planning and foresight with infrastructure however his team is simply repeating the failed policies of the past.

“In a recent article, when asked if the Federal Government would fund the duplication of the M5 East motorway, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the State Government ‘needs to get its house in order and to be clear about what it’s priorities are’.”

Media contact:
Tanya Abraham
Manager Public Relations and Events
9330 6008 or 0411 748 953