MP cautious about RTA proposal
STATE Member for Clarence Steve Cansdell welcomes a second bridge for Grafton being back on the agenda but is cynical about the latest proposal, announced by the NSW Roads and Traffic Authority on Tuesday.
“This is the same proposal as five years ago,” he said yesterday.
“It’s a smokescreen to make it look like they’re doing something.”
Mr Cansdell said the NSW Government should just put up the money for the project.
“I’m not optimistic that the State Government is committed to the project, but if they start the ball rolling I’ll be in full support,” he said.
Asked for his assurance that a second bridge would be high on the agenda for a State Coalition Government, Mr Cansdell said if money was available he would be pushing hard for a commitment.
“It is a priority for me and something I would push through,” he said.
However, Mr Cansdell said he was not confident that the State’s current financial situation would be a healthy one.
“I don’t know, hypothetically, if the money is there, and all the planning and engineering work is done, then we could start work in the first term, but we just have to wait and see what’s in the kitty,” he said.
“I couldn’t responsibly commit to anything until we get into government and see what money there is available.”
Mr Cansdell said there was a strong argument for a second bridge as a priority for the Grafton community.
However, it was also a vital connection point for people travelling interstate, linking the Pacific Highway to the Summerland Way and ultimately Brisbane and South-East Queensland.
Mr Cansdell was unable to confirm if he would attend either of the information sessions to be hosted by the RTA at the Grafton Community Centre on Wednesday, March 3.