Gold Coast MP Karen Andrews says her opposition to light rail not motivated by an investment property she owns along the proposed route

House Affairs Minister and member for the Gold Coast seat of McPherson Karen Andrews claims an expense house she owns together the proposed route for light-weight rail stage 4 has nothing to do with her opposition to the controversial task.

Ms Andrews’s declared interests consist of a device together the Gold Coastline Highway, wherever the proposed light-weight rail line would be designed.

Ms Andrews mentioned she has declared all of her qualities as needed in the sign up of members’ interests.

“I am not hiding them at the rear of a believe in, I am not hiding them in any form of a fund, they are declared extremely transparently.”

Leading reacts

Light rail has obtained wide aid from each Labor and the LNP, with the federal govt committing practically $400 million to stage 3 previous year.

But in an open letter posted on her site last 7 days, Ms Andrews explained she had prepared to Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher, asking that no federal funding be delivered to the $2.7 billion venture.

She wrote that stage 4, which would run south along the Gold Coastline Highway to the airport near Coolangatta, could conclusion up “damaging organizations, developing lengthier-term website traffic difficulties and impacting the amenity of these dwelling on side streets with a route as a result of Burleigh Hill, Palm Beach and Currumbin.”

Light rail at the Gold Coast
Light-weight rail at the Gold Coastline is proposed to extend south to the airport.(ABC News: Greg Nelson)

“I am only inspired by doing the proper point for folks in my electorate,” Ms Andrews explained.

But Leading Annastacia Palaszczuk mentioned stage 4 is a main portion of the state government’s strategies for the 2032 Olympics.

“She has a responsibility to arrive forward and condition what her views are categorically,” Ms Palaszczuk explained.

“We are performing hand in glove with the council below to make absolutely sure the mild rail carries on.”

When requested if she would guidance any possibilities other than the proposed Gold Coastline Freeway route, Ms Andrews explained: “I have not entered into that”.

“Some will say it must go down a unique route, I have not entered into that,” she explained.

Ms Andrews said the southern Gold Coastline demands a “good transportation solution” but that she is ready for the state authorities to complete a business scenario for extension of heavy rail from Varsity Lakes south to the airport.

Mayor renews criticism

Mayor Tom Tate has been heavily significant of Ms Andrew’s position and reported her opposition is “not logically pushed”.

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate standing in front of media microphones.
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate explained opposition to mild rail stage 4 as “not logically pushed”.(ABC Gold Coastline: Jennifer Huxley)

“At the eve of an election … Member for McPherson does ‘you’re not coming down this route’,” he stated.

“Not just me blindsided or the Premier, I feel the customers of the LNP were being blindsided.

Australian Values Social gathering candidate for McPherson, Andy Cullen, said locals “have been mostly ignored” and that Ms Andrews experienced “flipped-flopped”.

A man in a white shirt smiling while sitting on steps
Andy Cullen, Australian Values Party candidate for McPherson.(Equipped: Andy Cullen)

“They’ve been campaigning with their challenges and putting these forward to govt for about two decades about this light rail,” he said.

“Now she’s setting up to spend awareness.”

But Ms Andrews claimed statements that her opposition has been inspired by the impending federal election are “just a nonsense”.

“I have talked and elevated problems about light-weight rail on behalf of my neighborhood for a very long time period of time.

“They require to be listened to.”

Community consultation problems

The state govt executed community session for stage 4 in 2021, with a study locating 63 per cent of respondents supported the highway route, although a council survey found 64 for every cent supported it.

signs saying trams outta tugun
Opposition to light rail on the southern Gold Coastline has been vocal.(ABC Gold Coast: Dominic Cansdale)

But a study run by Ms Andrews’s business office final calendar year located 81 for each cent opposed it.

Ms Andrews said public consultation has been insufficient.

“What they get from the condition government is an information and facts session,” Ms Andrews stated.

But Tom Tate explained: “The key issue is about disclosure”.

“If you’ve got obtained an expense residence there, set it ideal in front to everybody to know,” he said,

“To be dug up by a journalist afterwards on, it is really like, why failed to you disclose it?

“It just does not look very good.”