Beth Shelley, Booerie Creek.
Councils in the northern rivers find it increasingly difficult to pay for road maintenance because everything is carried by road.
All passengers and freight in trucks and buses tear up the roads but don’t pay for the damage they cause.
Under-recovery of these costs has been estimated at between $7,000 and $10,500 per truck each year. Ratepayers are therefore paying the repair bill of trucking companies.
Statistics show that road accidents are on the rise and have cost approx. $500 million over the last five years.
When the government does cost comparisons between road and rail services they don’t include costs incurred by taxpayers of road accidents, road maintenance, traffic congestion, air pollution and carbon emissions. NSW governments appear to be biased against railways, possibly because of electoral donations from big companies who make money out of roads.
Rail is 200 times safer than road, especially given the terrible state of local roads. When will one of the major parties support what’s best for the community rather than money for their campaigns?
The prospect of rail services in this area is so popular it would do more for the electoral prospects of either party than money anyway. Our communities want better, safer roads.