Road fund­ing falls short, say coun­cils

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - City Of South Perth South Perth - Su­sanne Reilly

NEED A TRADIE? ALMOST half of fa­tal or se­ri­ous traf­fic crashes in the City of South Perth oc­cur on coun­cil-con­trolled roads.

The WA Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment As­so­ci­a­tion’s (WALGA) Met­ro­pol­i­tan Re­gion Lo­cal Road Crash Re­port 2012, a survey of Main Roads WA crash statis­tics be­tween 2003 and 2012, found that 44 per cent of fa­tal or se­ri­ous ac­ci­dents in South Perth were on lo­cal roads.

Although that rep­re­sented nearly half of the se­ri­ous ac­ci­dents, only 15 per cent of State Gov­ern­ment road fund­ing is pro­vided for coun­cil­con­trolled roads in WA

About 37 per cent of crash vic­tims se­ri­ously in­jured or killed on South Perth lo­cal roads were vul­ner­a­ble road users, such as mo­tor­cy­clists, cy­clists and pedes­tri­ans.

WALGA pres­i­dent Troy Pickard said the as­so­ci­a­tion had long cam­paigned for suf­fi­cient fund­ing for lo­cal gov­ern­ments to main­tain lo­cal roads.

“This re­port fur­ther high­lights the ex­treme and frankly dan­ger­ous dis­crep­ancy that ex­ists be­tween State and lo­cal road fund­ing,” he said.

“In the cur­rent State Bud­get, $988 mil­lion has been al­lo­cated for State roads, com­pared with just $176 mil­lion for lo­cal roads; this is de­spite the fact that lo­cal gov­ern­ments are re­spon­si­ble for 88 per cent of the road net­work.”

Trans­port Min­is­ter Dean Nalder said in ad­di­tion to the funds pro­vided through the five-year State Road Funds to Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Agree­ment, lo­cal gov­ern­ment also re­ceived sig­nif­i­cant fund­ing from the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment and its own rates col­lec­tions.

“Lo­cal gov­ern­ments have con­sis­tently un­der­spent their al­lo­ca­tions from State Gov­ern­ment for the past five years. Other sources of fund­ing in­clude the $20 mil­lion Black Spot Pro­gram,” he said.

A Man­ning Road in­ter­sec­tion in South Perth.

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