The state’s peak bus industry body has welcomed a commitment by Queensland Labor to scrap the Newman Government’s controversial new bus tender process and reintroduce direct negotiations.
The Queensland Bus Industry Council (QBIC) said many in the industry are living in fear that they will be replaced by out of state bus companies who can afford to initially run at a loss to meet the State Government’s new criteria.
The QBIC has launched a transport blueprint for the state, “Moving People Queensland”, which has received endorsement from Labor.
In a letter from deputy opposition leader Tim Mulherin, Labor committed to “immediately halt the Newman Government’s destructive and divisive competitive tendering approach to bus contracts and revert to a negotiated contract process with operators.”
Mr Mulherin also acknowledged that the LNP’s approach had “the potential to drive locally owned and operated bus operators out of business”, and committed Labor to establishing a new independent statutory authority to guide the state’s infrastructure program.
QBIC executive director David Tape said the commitment showed an understanding of transport needs.
“This will provide for certainty of contracts and a continuation of business for small to medium bus operators in Queensland.”
“Finally there is some hope to retain Queensland business and Queensland jobs.”
The QBIC has called on the LNP to match Labor’s commitment.
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