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Call for Urgent Meeting on Public Transport

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Mr MORRIS (Mornington) I raise a matter this evening for the Minister for Public Transport.

The request that I make of the minister is that she arrange an urgent meeting with the councillors of the Mornington Peninsula shire and the local lower house members of Parliament, the members of Parliament for Mornington, Nepean and Hastings.

I have repeatedly raised in this house the concerns that I have about public transport on the peninsula. The only investment in public transport that has occurred in the last 20 years on the peninsula occurred under the Baillieu and Napthine governments.

Labor has been in power for 16 of the last 20 years and the population has increased significantly but nothing has been done on their watch. Most recently—one of many times I have raised public transport matters on the peninsula in this house—I raised the issue of the route 788 bus. Ventura, the operator, agreed there was a problem. They had a solution.

The minister would not agree. There was no interest in even looking at the proposition, and in fact the final response I got was: The member’s interest in these services has been noted, and will be included in considerations for planning in the future.

Well, the kids who cannot get on the route 788 bus are not interested in planning for the future. They want the problem fixed now.

I note that the member for Nepean in June sought a meeting with the minister and the Mornington Peninsula CEO. I do not know whether that meeting has
occurred or not, but certainly if it has, it has done absolutely nothing to mollify the councillors of the Mornington Peninsula shire, who recently—in fact I think
it was yesterday—launched a program calling for better buses on the Mornington Peninsula.

They rightly make the point that at present 82 per cent of the peninsula is not serviced by public transport. Mornington Peninsula shire residents are almost five times less likely to travel to work by public transport than those in greater Melbourne. A mere 3 per cent take public transport to work compared with 15 per cent across Melbourne.

They are looking for improvements to the 781 route, the 782 route, the 783 route, the 784 route, the 785 route and the 788 route, plus a cross-peninsula service.

As I say, nothing has been done in this space by successive Labor governments for the last 20 years.I am suggesting we need to all sit down around a table—the three local members, the shire councillors and the
minister—and try and get some resolution, because the government cannot keep ignoring the Mornington Peninsula when it comes to public transport.