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Capricornia – Land of the Forgotten

Michelle Landry MP said Capricornia has been forgotten in Labor’s Budget, with funds for regional infrastructure slashed and falling short of their promise for cost-of-living relief.

The Member for Capricornia has called last night’s Budget a failure and a stark reminder that the people of regional Australia are not a priority for the Labor party.

“Capricornia is the land of the forgotten. Despite the Prime Minister declaring before the election that ‘no one would be held back, no one would be left behind’, this budget has proved him wrong.

“What we have seen in the budget is regional funding for critical infrastructure projects slashed.

“Alongside my colleagues, I have been lobbying for the money for Beef Corridors road network to be reinstated. That has not been delivered. Dangerous rural roads and the notorious Bruce Highway between Rockhampton and Sarina will deteriorate further, with the $467 million promised just days ago being funnelled into southeast Queensland,” Ms Landry said.

Labor spent $1.6 billion less on road and rail projects this year than it promised just five months ago in its Mid-Year Economic Fiscal Outlook.

“Labor is also gold-platting the public service, with 36,000 more bureaucrats in Canberra which includes 700 more employees for the Department of Climate Change.”

Ms Landry said the $300 energy rebate is an admission that Labor’s energy policy has failed and they’re covering over the cracks with taxpayers’ money, to politically defer the impact of higher energy prices until after the election.

“Labor’s rebates for energy bills, of $300 per household, comes after Labor’s plans for 28,000 kilometres of transmissions lines and billions of dollars in tax incentives for ‘green energy’ projects, ripping up agricultural land and remnant vegetation in the name of renewables.

“While I’m delighted that I’ve had a win with no federal funding for the Pioneer-Burdekin Pumped Hydro project, Labor has cut $592.3 million in funding for the Paradise Dam Improvement project, the Big Rocks Weir project and the Hughenden Irrigation Scheme, redirecting the savings to ‘other priorities’ not even announced yet. This is in addition to more than $7 billion that was taken out of water infrastructure in Labor’s first Budget in 2022.

Labor has no plan to address regional Australia’s housing crisis in Capricornia, despite bringing in nearly 1.7 million new migrants over the next five years.

“Capricornia has been betrayed in Labor’s Budget. Sadly, it is clear Labor has no plan to fix its cost-of-living crisis and regional families will feel the pain in their wallets. Under Labor, Capricornians are poorer and being hit with higher taxes, higher mortgage repayments and higher grocery and energy bills.”

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