Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads Scott Emerson
Frequent And Affordable Public Transport
Victor P Taffa
Public transport in South East Queensland will receive a record $1.6 Billion investment in the 2012-13 Budget to encourage passengers back on to buses, trains and ferries.
Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said savings found across the portfolio had been redirected towards delivering more frequent, reliable and affordable services.
“The Newman Government is serious about lowering the cost of living for families and that will attract people back on to public transport after patronage reached a four-year low of 178.3 Million trips last year under Labor.” Mr. Emerson said.
“This budget includes $39 Million over four years to deliver the free travel after nine weekly journeys, to reduce the cost of living burden on regular public transport users.”
“We’ve already seen a remarkable uptake with 80,000 public transport users taking 200,000 free journeys each week.”
“The budget will also allocate $158.2 Million over four years to halve Labor’s fare hikes in 2013 and 2014.”
“An additional $18 Million has been allocated for a two year trials to improve train frequency with 15 minute daytime services on the Ferny Grove line.”
“This is on top of the $10 Million invested to provide 2,000 additional weekly services across Northern Brisbane in June.”
The Newman Government will continue to deliver a number of public transport reforms across the state, including aligning regional taxi, train, coach, school and air services under the TransLink banner.
Additional reforms in 2012-13 aimed at keeping transport affordable include:
- Reviewing bus services to end duplication, simplify the network, improve under-utilised bus services and deliver more services where they are needed.
- Retain the Travel Train concessions currently available to pensioner and seniors. The number of free trips per services will be capped and the booking fee will increase from $12.50 to $25.
- Discounted taxi trips taken under the taxi subsidy scheme will be capped at $400 per person per year to ensure it continues to provide an accessible form of transport for those most in need. The cap will cover the travel needs of more than 80 % of users.
- Review of the School Transport Assistance Scheme for bus services to ensure eligible students are using these services and review new schools in the existing 3.2 km (primary school) and 4.8 km (secondary school) boundaries.
“In regional Queensland $22.7 Million will be provided to continue upgrades to school bus fleets, while $15.4 Million will be used to upgrade sections of the Mt. Isa train line.”
“The budget will also allow for a significant upgrade to Queensland Rail’s rollingstock including $357.4 Million for new rollingstock and upgrading existing rollingstock.” Mr. Emerson said.