Oakeshott at odds with Gillard Govt
THE agreement between the minority Gillard Government and independents Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor is being challenged daily, Mr Oakeshott declared on Friday.
His comments come after it was revealed the government had frozen future rounds of the Regional Development Australia Fund, putting in doubt more than $600 million in grants for regional and rural areas.
Mr Oakeshott said the integrity of the agreement was being challenged daily, and the funding freeze was just the latest in a long line of government moves putting the tenuous agreement at risk.
But he would not be drawn on whether he would consider pulling his support for the government, instead saying such questions were best put to the government.
Mr Oakeshott said from discussion he had with Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean, Treasurer Wayne Swan and Ms Gillard, he understood the future RDAF funding was to be delivered.
But he said the government was "drifting" on its promises, and he hoped the funds would still be delivered.
While Mr Crean this week said the remaining $600 million would be delivered, he would not say over what timeframe the grant program would be completed.