Opposition Leader Tony Abbott in a dozer at McCoskers, Gladstone, yesterday.
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott in a dozer at McCoskers, Gladstone, yesterday. Brenda Strong

Abbott rolls into town

IT was all about the big toys for the boys as Opposition Leader Tony Abbott visited civil engineering company, McCosker, in Gladstone yesterday.

After meeting with workers and apprentices, Mr Abbott was treated to a lesson in how to manoeuvre a D6H Catepillar dozer.

However, there were no funding promises made for Gladstone while he visited the region, leading the Labor Party calling for a full commitment for the notorious Calliope Crossroads.

“With less than 72 hours to go until polling day, it's now more obvious than ever that only Federal Labor will fix this intersection, not just for the next three years, but for the next three decades,” Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said.

The Crossroads issue has turned into a campaign slanging match with Liberal National Party-endorsed candidate Ken O'Dowd saying LNP was committed to do the project.

“We were promised an overpass over the Calliope Crossroads which is over the Bruce Highway, three years ago,” he said.

“Fifty-five million dollars was allocated. Nothing's been done and we will get that job done if we get into power.”

However, to date, the LNP has only confirmed they would match Labor's $55 million promised in the 2007 election, along with $25 million for the Yeppen Crossing project compared to Labor's $40 million commitment.

Mr Albanese said the LNP must know that they have massively underfunded both projects.

The Observer made a number of attempts to get a commitment from Mr Abbott for the whole $150 million needed to upgrade the Dawson/Bruce Highway intersection at Calliope yesterday, but had not received a response by time of publication.

Labor's Member for Flynn Chris Trevor said the upgrade of the Calliope Crossroads was a critical infrastructure priority for the local community, and that it was crucial that the upgrade was done properly.

“Mr Abbott and his LNP candidate need to be held to account on this issue – will they deliver?”



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