http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/tony- ... z2g4NfZuGATony Abbott says he doesn't need to see the east-west link's full business case
Prime Minister Tony Abbott will hand over $1.5 billion in federal funding for the east-west link without seeing the full business case for the controversial massive infrastructure project, despite an election promise that any investment of more than $100 million would require a published cost benefit analysis.
Confirming he would honour the coalition's election commitment to partly fund the $8 billion Victorian government tollway, which would connect the Eastern Freeway to Melbourne's western suburbs, Mr Abbott told radio station 3AW that he trusts that the East West Link is a viable project despite not being provided with the full business case, which the state government has refused to make public. Premier Denis Napthine has defended the lack of transparency, saying that the the public release of details would place in jeopardy a competitive advantage as it sought bidders for its construction. Instead, the government has released a brochure asserting the project will generate $1.40 in benefits for every $1 invested.
Mr Abbott said he had not seen the confidential document but had been briefed briefed on the costs and benefits of the freeway by bureaucrats. He said he had accepted the judgment of those briefing him on the grounds that the project makes social and economic sense. When asked if he will see the full business case before signing off on the money, Mr Abbott said: "I have no reason to think that the short case which has been published is in any way mendacious." "I mean, we're talking here about officials who have a lifetime of public service behind them," he said.
Didn't he just sack a load of officials who have a lifetime of public service behind them? Evidence based government be dammed, I'm hoping this bodes well for the Torrens section of the South Road upgrade?