The battlelines have been drawn in the new seat of Burt in what could be one of the deciding seats in this Saturday’s federal election.
Residents in the cities of Gosnells and Armadale have a choice between Labor candidate Matt Keogh, Liberal candidate Matt O’Sullivan, Greens candidate Muhammad Salman, Australian Christians candidate Warnar Spyker and Shooters Fishers and Farmers candidate Ian Blevin.
The Liberals notionally hold the new seat by six per cent based on past polling booth counts but recent polls suggest it’s much closer between the two major parties.
The campaign has seen a flurry of promises and policies and some heavy hitters visiting the area including Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, opposition leader Bill Shorten and former prime minister John Howard.
In Armadale major Labor promises included $25 million to kick start a solution to traffic woes on Kelmscott’s Denny Avenue and $80 million towards the Armadale/North Lake Road Bridge to address congestion in Cockburn Central.
The party also committed $1 billion for state Labor’s Metronet heavy rail project, which would see the Armadale to Byford line delivered sooner but at the cost of Roe 8, which would be dumped.
One of the rail project’s priorities was the extension of the Thornlie line to the Mandurah line at Cockburn.
The extension would include two train stations in Canning Vale.
Smaller commitments included $1.7 million for safety, legal and drug rehab initiatives, $150,000 for the Forrestdale Sporting Association and $10,000 for the Armadale Gymnastics Club.
On a federal level the party would reinstate the Gonski school funding model, which would see $200 million more spent on schools in Burt over 10 years than currently predicted.
The Liberal Party is yet to form any firm funding commitment on the Armadale/North Lake Road Bridge or Denny Avenue but has committed $10 million towards the overdue $25 million Armadale Aquatic Centre redevelopment.
Mr O’Sullivan said he would advocate for both road projects in government and was committed to bringing stakeholders together to address traffic issues in Kelmscott.
Cecil Andrews Senior High School would also share in $4.6 million to start a pilot training program for its students, which would see employers like Austal training them for strong pathways to employment.
The NBN has been a hot issue with the Liberal Party sticking to its fibre to the node rollout model while the Labor Party will move to the more expensive but faster fibre to the premises model if elected.
The Greens would upgrade all public and community housing in the country with solar panels by 2030 to lessen bill pressure on low income earners.
In Gosnells the Liberal Party pledged $6 million to upgrade Baseball Park in Thornlie and $1.3 million for upgrades at Sutherlands Park in Southern River.
If elected the party would also invest $2.4 million to help fund a new facility for the Thornlie Bowling Club and have pledged to fund CCTV throughout the City of Gosnells.
- By Hamish Hastie and Amy Blom