Environment, Resources And Development Committee: Public Transport

02 Dec 2009 speecharchive

This speech is to indicate support for the Environment, Resources And Development Committee: Public Transport motion. The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK expresses that she is pleased that the government has replicated the Liberal Party's announcement to electrify the rail as a key plank in expanding the capacity of our public transport system.

The Hon. J.M.A. LENSINK (22:28): I will be brief, given the lateness of the hour. First and foremost, I want to make some acknowledgments in terms of the establishment of the committee, which was initially proposed by the member for Schubert, Mr Ivan Venning, who, it is fair to say, has a great interest in trains, planes and automobiles above many others.

I would like to also thank the research contractors on the project from the University of South Australia's Institute for Sustainable Systems and Technologies—Professor Derek Scrafton, Professor Michael Taylor and Dr Nicholas Holyoak—who did a great deal of work in putting together facts and figures, examining international systems and preparing an historical treatise on our metropolitan and country transport systems. I think it is fair to say that we were all very impressed with it and found it very useful.

The recommendations probably had much more direct ownership by members of the committee and, in particular, the Hon Mark Parnell and Ivan Venning had great input into finessing the recommendations to ensure that they had a fair amount of grunt to them. There are a number of recommendations which I think are quite aspirational and which urge the government to ensure that it does invest in our public transport system. The point was made quite clear to us that it is not just a matter of purchasing additional buses or trams, or whatever infrastructure it may be, but those operational costs are ongoing and those investments need to be made in a recurrent budget to ensure that the maintenance and ongoing needs are met in an expanded system.

I am pleased that the government has replicated the Liberal Party's announcement to electrify the rail as a key plank in expanding the capacity of our public transport system. I commend the report to the council. I think it is a very useful piece of work that people will find quite beneficial into the future in terms of having an audit, if you like, of our current situation, our potential in the future and also historically. I support the motion.