Protecting And Improving V/Line For Regional Passengers

The Andrews Labor Government is strengthening public ownership of V/Line, to protect it from any future attempts by the Liberal and National Party to privatise it and run it in to the ground.

Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan today introduced legislation to transfer V/Line’s operations from V/Line Pty Ltd to the publicly owned V/Line Corporation.

This will make it harder for a future Liberal-National Government to do what they did in the past – privatise the regional operator.

The Kennett Government’s disastrous privatisation of V/Line hurt regional passengers and fell apart within a few years, when regional services were handed back to the government.

The Bracks and Brumby Labor Governments rebuilt the regional operator, expanded services and invested billions in major rail infrastructure projects to improve V/Line, including Regional Fast Rail and Regional Rail Link.

The previous Liberal-National Government then came to power and services and investment went backwards again.

They didn’t order a single regional carriage for two years, ripped $120 million out of the regional operator and had a secret plan to sack more than 100 staff, which the Labor Government stopped when it came to office. They also had their own secret plan to privatise V/line.

In just two years the Andrews Labor Government has restored and increased funding to V/Line, ordered 48 new regional carriages, and added more than 340 extra V/Line services, with 170 more to be added next year.

The Transport Integration Amendment (Head, Transport for Victoria and Other Governance Reforms) Bill introduced today also establishes Transport for Victoria (TfV).

TfV is a new overarching transport agency that will coordinate Victoria’s road and public transport system and plan for its future.

It will bring together the planning, management and coordination of Victoria’s transport system, including VicRoads and Public Transport Victoria, and provide a single source of information for motorists and passengers.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan

“This will help protect V/Line from any future Liberal and National Party attempts to privatise the regional operator and run services into the ground.”

“The former Liberal and National Government ripped $120 million out of the V/Line, didn’t order any new carriages for two years and had plans to sack staff and privatise services.”

“We’ve restored and increased V/Line’s funding, and invested more than $1.3 billion in better regional public transport to get people home safer and sooner, every day.”