Northern Territory Shadow Minister for Transport Adam Giles
Taxpayer Dollars Flying Away
Victor P Taffa
The announcement by Jetstar that it is slashing its Darwin-Singapore service highlights the recklessness of the Chief Minister’s $5 Million commitment to fund the airline’s move to Darwin.
Northern Territory Shadow Minister for Transport Adam Giles said the money donated to Jetstar by Chief Minister Paul Henderson during the election campaign turned into a costly rort.
“Airport General Manager, Ian Kew, said on radio this morning Jetstar had forced out its competitors and then jacked up its ticket prices.” Mr. Giles said.
“This is the danger of using taxpayers’ money to cherry-pick businesses.” Mr. Giles said.
“The Government handed Jetstar $5 Million and now the airline goes back on its pledge to turn Darwin Airport into a regional hub and cuts international services.”
“Paul Henderson’s shameless donation to Jetstar of $5 Million during an election campaign was political pork-barrelling of the highest order.”
“What it did was drive out the competition and leave Territorians with unreliable air services that are anything but ‘budget’.” Mr. Giles said.
“The Labor Party has a history of giving airlines money during election campaigns.”
“(Former Chief Minister) Clare Martin handed over millions of taxpayers’ dollars to Billionaire Richard Branson when he was establishing Virgin Blue in Australia and after an initial flurry of enthusiasm they soon began rolling back services.” Mr. Giles said.
“What this has done is create a revolving door, where Jetstar, Tiger and Virgin Blue come and go on a whim.”
“The only lesson Labor’s learnt from these costly exercises is how to waste taxpayer money during election campaigns.” Mr. Giles said.
Editor Victor P Taffa supports Railway Expansion throughout Australia. Considering that the size of Australia is as large as it is suggests that an effective high speed network of railway lines to every Capital and Regional City should have support from all political parties.
Both the Adelaide and Darwin Central Business Districts should have railway stations that can accept electric high speed rail.
Currently Interstate passengers arrive at Keswick when wanting to go to Adelaide. Similarly Interstate passengers arrive at Palmerston when wanting to go to Darwin.
This arrangement for both cities is the same as if trains terminated at Redfern instead of Sydney Central or at North Melbourne instead of Southern Cross Station. Sydney has a Railway Station that also goes to the Airport.
The last time trains terminated at Redfern was in 1906 prior to the opening of Sydney Central Station. Sydney Central is one of the great Railway Stations in the world.
The Rann Government is supporting electrification of the Adelaide Railway Network and as contained in www.isput.com.au Editor Victor P Taffa similarly supports electrification for the entire New South Wales Railways.
High Speed Rail will provide real competition with all airlines and benefit everyone.