I rise to speak on the motion moved by the Member for Forde. And what a good motion it is—more good news for our economy and more jobs created under the Coalition government’s strong economic management. Since coming to government in 2013 we’ve created a million jobs and counting. Now with economic growth and jobs growth exceeding expectations, while this continues we can expect a lift in wages growth, in the words of the RBA Governor.

Jobs and wage growth are my constituents’ number one concern. What are we doing to create more jobs, they ask. Those who are putting in the hours at work, they’re still struggling to meet rising power prices and cost of living. So I’m pleased to tell them under the Coalition, unemployment is at its lowest rate since 2012. Last year we created over 400,000 jobs. Three quarters of these were full time jobs.

Compare that to the previous Labor government. They averaged less than 150,000 new jobs each year. And when they left office, unemployment was going up—they were losing full time jobs!

In my electorate the effects of our booming economy have been clear. I have to thank the Member for Forde for one project that has been a boon for local jobs. He started the fight for funding to upgrade the M1. It was great to work with him and my Queensland colleagues to secure $1 billion for these vital upgrades. Not only will these upgrades reduce peak hour congestion, getting people to work sooner and safer, they will also support up to 450 local jobs. A double win for the local economy!

Another jobs-generating, congestion-busting project that’s now underway in my electorate is the upgrade of the Green Camp Corridor. I’ve enjoyed seeing construction start on this much-needed project. And then there’s the $300 million Brisbane Metro project, which is now in the expression of interest phase. Another example of this government’s commitment to invest in vital infrastructure while creating local jobs.

There are many more small-scale projects in my electorate this government has invested in that will provide a boost for the local economy and local employment. I’m seeing the benefits firsthand and I fully support this motion and this government’s commitment to strong economic growth.

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This is fantastic news for locals in my electorate. My Queensland LNP colleagues and I have been fighting hard for this funding. People have been telling us just how bad congestion is on the M1 and how dangerous it can be on their daily commute. I've been hearing the same story across Bonner. It is people power that has secured this funding for the M1 as well as for the Brisbane Metro. It's people power that I'm sure will lock in funding for two other critical projects that I'm fighting for in Bonner. One billion dollars in funding—what an outcome! I must thank the member for Forde for leading this fight, and my constituents who get at stuck at the M1-Gateway merge every afternoon certainly will.

Many people have told me how thrilled they are with this outcome. It means they'll be able to get home to their families sooner and safer. I know the coalition's campaign and the community's angst about these commitments is what finally drove the Queensland government to commit to match our federal commitment and deliver for the people of South East Queensland. And now $300 million for Brisbane Metro—another awesome outcome that will reduce congestion for Bonner constituents. I have tirelessly campaigned for this funding with Trevor Evans, the member for Brisbane. It's another funding commitment that shows the coalition government is listening to locals. Then there is the $10 million I helped secure with the member for Bowman. This funding will help upgrade the Green Camp Road corridor, including the notorious Green Camp Road-Rickett Road intersection. More congestion busted; more people who enjoy a much safer drive, whether it's to school pick-up or work.

That's why I'm now fighting hard for two other critical road projects in Bonner. I know the government is listening. Locals are asking us to invest in critical infrastructure to reduce congestion and improve safety, and that's exactly what we're doing. It's what we'll continue to do for dangerous black spots like the Lindum station crossing. Recently over 4,000 locals signed my petition to fix this dangerous intersection. Last week the Minister for Infrastructure came to inspect the Lindum crossing in person and to discuss the new Urban Congestion Fund announced in the budget this month. We are investing $1 billion in congestion-busting projects like the Lindum station crossing. I also took the minister to the Newnham Road and Wecker Road intersection at Mount Gravatt East. This is another notorious intersection in my electorate. The RACQ recently named this intersection as one of the worst in Brisbane for serious crashes and casualties. The minister agrees it's an absolute hazard. I've started a community petition calling for funding to fix the Newnham Road-Wecker Road intersection. It has already gathered almost 1,000 signatures. It's people power in action again.

Works have now started on the M1 Gateway merge upgrade and the Green Camp Road corridor upgrade. Brisbane City Council expects tenders for the Brisbane Metro will go out as early as the second half of this year. I'm proud to have secured funding for these vital projects to get my constituents home sooner and safer. I'm fighting just as hard for the funding to fix the Lindum crossing and Newnham Road intersection.

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Congestion relief is on the way for Queensland motorists as the Turnbull Government gets to work on vital upgrades to the M1 Motorway.

Federal Member for Bonner said the work starting today includes widening of the M1 southbound between Eight Mile Plains and Rochedale to up to five lanes, providing much-needed extra capacity on one of the busiest roads in the country.

“It’s great to see this Turnbull Government election commitment to spend $225 million fixing the M1 getting underway,” Mr Vasta said.

“These vital upgrades to the M1 will reduce congestion and improve the quality of life for people in Bonner who use this road every day, as well as supporting up to 450 jobs.”

“It comes on top of the Turnbull Government’s commitment last week to spend a further $1 billion to continue fixing the M1.”

“This $1 billion commitment will fund construction of further vital upgrades – including one between Eight Mile Plains and Daisy Hill within the Brisbane urban area.”

“Only the Turnbull Government is committed to fixing the M1, getting people in Bonner home to their families sooner and safer instead of being stuck in traffic.”

Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities Paul Fletcher said the Turnbull Government was able to fund the roads that the people of South-East Queensland need because of its careful budget management.

“The work that is getting underway today is thanks to the strong advocacy of local Liberal National MPs like Ross Vasta who have fought long and hard for the M1 to be fixed,” Mr Fletcher said.

“We now hope the Palaszczuk Labor Government will stop playing politics and come to the table to help deliver these vital upgrades that Queensland motorists need and deserve.”

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The Turnbull Government is acting to provide critical upgrades to the M1 Motorway to deliver safer, less congested roads for the people of Queensland. 

Federal Member for Bonner, Ross Vasta said the $1 billion investment will mean people in Bonner spend less time in traffic and more time with their families, improving the quality of life for residents in his electorate and South-east Queensland. 

“These upgrades will allow Bonner commuters and families to get to where they need to be quicker and safer, whether it’s work, school, or a trip down to the Coast,” Mr Vasta said.

“We’ve already committed funding to widen the M1 between Eight Mile Plains and Rochedale from four to five lanes, and construction is due to start soon. This project will also help reduce peak hour congestion for Bonner residents.”

“This work will ease congestion and improve safety, helping to future-proof the corridor against growing traffic demands.”

The Turnbull Government is committing $1 billion for the construction of two high-priority upgrade projects – one between Varsity Lakes and Tugun on the Gold Coast end of the M1 Corridor, the other between Eight Mile Plains and Daisy Hill within the Brisbane urban area.

The Eight Mile Plains to Daisy Hill project is expected to include widening the motorway from six to eight lanes, ramp consolidation, managed motorways technology, extending the busway to Springwood, supporting bus priority south of Springwood and better active transport connections between centres.

Consistent with other major infrastructure projects in urban areas, the Turnbull Government will make this commitment based on a 50:50 funding share arrangement with the Queensland Government for both projects. 

Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities Paul Fletcher said the M1 was one of the most important and heavily congested routes in Queensland with nearly 30 million tonnes of freight moving between New South Wales and Queensland each year and between 50,000 and 155,000 vehicles per day using sections of the M1 from Springwood to Tugun.

“Investing in priority upgrades is critical to keep Queensland moving by reducing congestion and supporting future traffic demand,” Mr Fletcher said.

The Turnbull Government has previously committed funding to two projects on the M1 which are scheduled to commence construction in coming weeks: $115 million for the M1 Pacific Motorway – Gateway Merge and $110 million for the M1 Pacific Motorway – Mudgeeraba to Varsity Lakes project. These new projects will complement these two existing commitments. 

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A multi-million dollar roads package reached between the Australian and Queensland governments will help reduce congestion and time out on the road for commuters from the Bonner area, Federal Member for Bonner, Ross Vasta said today.

“I’m pleased to see the Federal and State governments have come to an agreement and have committed more than half a billion dollars in funding for major road infrastructure projects in South-East Queensland and Central Queensland,” Mr Vasta said.

“This includes long-awaited upgrades for the M1, in particular the widening of the M1 from four to five lanes from the Gateway Motorway merge past the Rochedale Road off-ramp at Eight Mile Plains.

“I have had many constituents who use the off-ramp share with me their frustrations over congestion in the area. I’m happy to be able to tell them that the vital upgrade of this section is now due to begin before the end of the year.”

Early works on the M1 Gateway Merge project are expected to commence in November 2017 with major construction to begin following the Commonwealth Games.

The newly-announced Queensland roads package also includes:

• Six-laning of the Pacific Motorway (M1) – Mudgeeraba to Varsity Lakes 
• Construction of the Walkerston bypass near Mackay 
• Upgrading of the Mt Lindesay Highway between Browns Plains and Beaudesert 
• Funding for the planning of the M1 – Varsity Lakes to Tugun. 

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