MAITLAND NEEDS BUDGET FUNDS FOR GROWTH
Jenny Aitchison MP is calling on the NSW Government to ensure that the health, education and transport needs of the growing Maitland electorate are met in the 2019 State Budget.
“The Berejiklian Government must deliver adequate resources to Maitland to address the needs of our growing population and the mounting strain being placed on health, education and transport,” Ms Aitchison said.
Ms Aitchison lists expedited construction of the new Maitland Hospital, increased staffing of all health services and funding into an inquiry on the best use of the existing Maitland Hospital site as her key health priorities.
“Recent Bureau of Health Information (BHI) data shows that the demand on Maitland’s emergency department and road ambulance service outstrips the state average. We must put resources in place to meet these needs,” Ms Aitchison said.
Ms Aitchison is also calling on the Berejiklian Government to match Labor’s pre-election commitment to build new primary and secondary public schools in the Maitland electorate and deliver the promised upgrade to Ashtonfield Public School.
“The Government committed to the Ashtonfield upgrade in its 2018 Budget but we are yet to see a funding commitment or timeline of works,” Ms Aitchison said. “Meanwhile many other schools, including Gillieston Public School, Maitland Public School and Maitland High School, are struggling with poor maintenance and/or significant numbers of demountables.”
Road congestion, resulting from Maitland’s booming population, is also a priority area for Ms Aitchison, as is the long-awaited work at Testers Hollow.
“Traffic at the Maitland Railway roundabout is utterly diabolical, a drain on productivity and a major safety concern,” Ms Aitchison said.
“The Government has committed to traffic lights at the intersection of the New England Highway and Louth Park Road. What consultation has been undertaken with the community and, importantly, what guarantees will the Government give that it will address the issue, when it was their failure to provide the right infrastructure in the first place?
“If the Government does persist in the traffic-light option, when will they commit the promised $5million required to get the rest of the project under way?”
Ms Aitchison also identified Raymond Terrace Road as a major safety issue that has largely been ignored by the Government.
“Thornton has grown by 7 per cent in the last year alone. Meanwhile the Government has been sitting on its hands as the intersections at Haussmann Drive, Government Road and roads into and through Thornton are congested and unsafe.
“We need action by the State Government to ensure that this essential infrastructure is upgraded quickly.”
Ms Aitchison also called for the Government to provide funding for duplication of the New England Highway between Anambah Road and Racecourse Road.
“Yet again we have an important project that this Government has promised but not delivered,” Ms Aitchison said.
“If they can’t do what they’ve promised, how will we get them to fund all the other infrastructure issues?”