THE NSW Government says it has released $1.54 billion to get on with the job of fully duplicating the Pacific Highway.
The announcement came today after months of protracted negotiations with the Australian Government over the funding breakdown.
Deputy Premier Andrew Stoner and Roads Minister Duncan Gay said the state has put forward the money to complete the duplication.
"This proves NSW just wants to get on with the duplication, while Julia Gillard and Anthony Albanese insist on kicking it around like a political football," Mr Stoner said.
He said Federal Labor had walked away from the 80:20 funding split that was in place with the former Labor State Government and insisted the O'Farrell government meet it dollar for dollar.
The office of Federal Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese gave a short yet direct response.
"We'll leave the politicking to the NSW Coalition Government.
"Our focus is on upgrading as much of the Highway as we can as quickly as we can with the funding that both governments have already committed."
On a local level, Mr Albanese reaffirmed the highway upgrade between Nambucca Heads and Urunga was on track to start by the middle of next year.
NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay says he has written to Mr Albanese calling for joint funding to complete the duplication between Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour, with upgrades on the following sections:
- The Oxley Highway to Kundabung;
- Kundabung to Kempsey;
- Frederickton to Eungai;
- Warrell Creek to Nambucca Heads
- Nambucca Heads to Urunga.
Mr Gay said he hoped the funding would also cover pre-construction works for the 155km section between Woolgoolga and Ballina.