NRMA Motoring and Services president Wendy Machin has reacted strongly to comments made by NSW Nationals leader Andrew Stoner (pictured) on radio this morning.
NRMA Motoring and Services president Wendy Machin has reacted strongly to comments made by NSW Nationals leader Andrew Stoner (pictured) on radio this morning.

NRMA: Stop passing Highway buck

NRMA Motoring and Services president Wendy Machin said said that calls by the NSW Government to change the funding model for the Pacific Highway from its current 50-50 spilt with the Federal Government is disingenuous and will do nothing to get the road upgraded by the 2016 deadline.

Ms Machin added that comments made on Monday by NSW Deputy-Premier Andrew Stoner on North Coast radio would be concerning to communities waiting to see the road finally upgraded.

"It was the Howard Government that set the 50-50 funding split for the Pacific Highway from 2006 and the NRMA has supported this approach since day one," Ms Machin said.

"While in Opposition, the current NSW Government frequently called on the NSW Labor Government to match federal funding for the Pacific Highway dollar-for-dollar and we supported this call too.

"To now suggest that funding should suddenly be reverted to an 80-20 model would ensure further long delays in finally upgrading this dangerous highway.

"Meeting the 2016 deadline was an election promise by both the State and Federal governments and we expect that promise to be kept. The deadline can still be met if both governments make the extra funding commitment now."

While an 80-20 funding ratio between the Commonwealth and state governments exists for parts of the national highway network, a separate 50-50 funding arrangement was established in 2006 for the Pacific Highway and other selected highways.