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Still no satisfactory solution for King Island as Hidding provides a half answer

  • “Likely” plan not good enough for island business and residents
  • Hidding’s cryptic non-announcement just not answering important questions

More than four months after serious questions around the freight service for King Island residents were raised in the wake of the Liberal Government’s botched plan, Infrastructure Minister Rene Hidding is still hopelessly unable to provide firm answers.

Shadow Infrastructure Minister and Braddon MP Shane Broad said the government’s announcement today of a “likely” replacement for the current temporary vessel servicing the island and Mr Hidding’s intention to seek “professional advice” would leave King Island residents further frustrated.

“It’s not good enough that after he has had so much time to find a solution to King Island’s shipping and freight problems all Mr Hidding has to offer is likely scenarios and promises to hold more talks,” Dr Broad said.

“That is hopeless and gives no security for the island.

“In fact Mr Hidding’s statement raises more questions instead of providing answers.

“While it appears there has been some progress in fixing the current stop gap shipping service to King Island Mr Hidding needs to come clean on how long the “new” interim service be in place.

“Will it be a triangular service including Victoria?

“Who will operate a long term service?

“Is the Government actually going to commission a brand new ship?

“This appears to be a stunt to throw into the mix because the Upper House is looking into the shipping issue.”