OUTSPOKEN Queensland Senator Barnaby Joyce has said for regional Australia all last night’s Federal Budget amounts to is “beautiful promises but a meagre reality”.
OUTSPOKEN Queensland Senator Barnaby Joyce has said for regional Australia all last night’s Federal Budget amounts to is “beautiful promises but a meagre reality”.

Senator: budget beautiful promises

OUTSPOKEN Queensland Senator Barnaby Joyce has said for regional Australia all last night’s Federal Budget amounts to is “beautiful promises but a meagre reality”.

The LNP’s Sen Joyce said the budget was “a cunning and shrewd way to promise lots, do less now and saying trust me I’ll do the rest of what I was going to do later”.

“In other words, ‘I really, really love you but I just don’t want to get married yet, but by gosh it will be a big engagement ring when I say I do’” he said this morning.

“As long as you say the numbers but don’t tell the time, this trick always works. It is the typical ‘free beer tomorrow’ promise.”

The LNP’s Shadow Minister for Regional Development Bob Baldwin said the only thing the budget delivered for regional Australia was “a serving of mirage “This Budget proves the Gillard Government’s commitments to regional Australia are nothing but unfunded spin,” he said.

“The Coalition was investing more in regional Australia than the Gillard Government is, and we didn’t need a massive mining tax to pay for it.

“Labor are so caught up in spin they think that just by whacking the word ‘regional’ into a program name they’ve done their bit for regional Australia.

“Not a single one of Labor’s regional funds actually quarantines funding for regional Australia - the terms of the Regional Development Australia Fund permit the entire fund to be spent in capital cities.”

Mr Baldwin said just two months ago Simon Crean promised $1 billion for the Regional Development Australia Fund, but the government’s own budget showed Labor would deliver just $150 million of this funding before the next election.

He said $500 million had been cut from regional programs, including $350 million from the Priority Regional Infrastructure Program, $100 million from the Building Better Regional Cities program and $50 million redirected from the Regional Development Australia fund for projects in the electorate of Lyne.

Senator Joyce added that on top of that it was the triumph of rhetoric over substance “when you can announce a $1 billion road without one inch of asphalt”.

“The magnus opus of Simon Crean’s regional policy has to be seen to be disbelieved,” he said.

“I cannot wait to tell the people of Tenterfield that part of their regional policy goes to assist the Australian Antarctic division.

“I know it is getting cold there but I didn’t know it was that freezing.

"More substantially, the people of Southern Cross will be ecstatic about the regional development appropriation for Perth Airport roads amounting to $480 million.

“That folks is the biggest allocation from ‘regional’ infrastructure spending.”

The Daily News is still awaiting details of planned infrastructure spending for the Southern Downs and Granite Belt from last night’s budget, from the office of Federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese.



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