Jobs creation

A shortcoming in Australia’s political system is that significant long-term projects are often ignored by political parties because the all important three-year electoral cycle takes centre stage.
The result is that worthy but distant projects are shuffled around and ultimately shelved only to re-emerge decades later at an exorbitant price when reality bites and the political pain becomes too intense.
In the meantime ‘trinkets’ are offered to voters at election times – particularly in marginal seats – with the underlying aim of achieving a political outcome for the lowest price.
But as next month’s Mayo by-election is showing, an increasing number of influential people are demanding a major project – a road and rail bypass to take traffic from Monarto, through Palmer and into the city’s northern industrial suburbs – be seriously considered.
This is a big money project.
For too long this region has been ignored by Federal governments of both persuasions but it now finds itself very much in the national political spotlight and voters are rightfully demanding attention.
The benefits of such a project to this fast-growing region are enormous.
In a nutshell:
• Removing the majority of semi-trailers from the freeway will enable it to cope with the region’s booming population and reduce congestion on Portrush Road.
• Removing freight trains from the rail line will allow the development of an efficient public transport corridor (train or O-Bahn) that could be expanded to Murray Bridge and Victor Harbor.
• A job generating transport hub can be developed at Monarto including a possible freight airport.
• This will allow intensive horticultural and associated processing industries to emerge, taking advantage of recycled water from the booming suburbs of Mt Barker.
Swimming pools and sports grounds are necessary but what this region is also demanding are commitments to develop jobs for the next generation.
The State Liberal Government has agreed to a benefit study into the bypass and what Mayo voters want to see is some serious Federal interest in the project.
Now is the perfect time for the two levels of government to work together towards securing this region’s future. Rest assured, there are plenty of votes in it.