Thursday, 26 September 2013 11:14

“Borrow to Build” WSROC urges

Media Release, December 1, 2011

The Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils has welcomed calls by leading economists to review the Government's apparent fear of debt at the expense of the State's infrastructure needs.


"WSROC has been calling for a review of this policy since the release of our report "Getting Western Sydney Growing" in November 2010," WSROC President Alison McLaren said.

"That report, prepared by leading economist Nick Gruen of Lateral Economics found that if the Government had borrowed to fund the cost of building all the tollways since the Sydney Harbour Tunnel, they would be at least $4.6 billion ahead," she said.

"Even in the unlikely event that this had caused a downgrading of NSW's credit rating, the state would still have come out well ahead. And commuters would have been far better off."

"Borrowing for productive infrastructure investments is not only safe; it is eminently sensible."

"WSROC has long argued that the infrastructure needs of our region – and NSW as a whole – must be prioritised over a slavish commitment to an arbitrary credit rating," Clr McLaren said.

"The residents of Western Sydney have been struggling on clogged up roads and over-crowded trains for too long."

"They want to see that the Government is committed to improving their quality of life, not simply pandering to the arbitrary demands of a self-appointed international rating agency."

"The O'Farrell Government has a great opportunity now to undertake a full review of the way we fund infrastructure and put in place new policies and priorities that ensures these projects can be built in the quickest and most cost effective way possible.

"We no longer have the luxury of deciding which one is more important than another – we have an equal need for the North West, the Parramatta-Epping and the South West Rail Links.

"The same applies with our road and freight networks – we don't have the luxury of choosing whether we want the M4 East or the M5 East, or the F3-M2 link – we need them all.

"Our report shows we can afford to borrow – what we can't afford to do is postpone these urgent projects any longer," Clr Mclaren said.



Contact: Clr Alison McLaren, WSROC President on 0410 441 842

Media Inquiries Karin Bishop, Deputy CEO on 0417 239 539


Last modified on Thursday, 26 September 2013 12:27

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