Belliveau asking why Liberals have delayed releasing update to 5-year paving plan

January 8, 2014

(Shelburne, NS) NDP transportation critic Sterling Belliveau is concerned a delay in the release of the 5-year highway plan could mean the Liberals are reverting to their old style of paving roads.

He says the 2013-2014 Capital Plan was released on December 12, 2012 and just days later, on December 20, the 2013-14 5-Year Highway Improvement Plan was made public. Belliveau wonders why the Liberals haven’t followed the same procedure.

“The hard work of ranking and recommending roads would have been completed by TIR staff this fall,” says Belliveau. “The budget is in place, so unless the Minister disagrees with the advice of his staff there is really no reason why the plan hasn’t been released yet.”

Belliveau also wonders why Minister Geoff MacLellan hasn’t followed his own Party’s advice when it comes to informing contractors about upcoming tenders. Only one-year ago, then Liberal TIR critic Wayne Gaudet requested that information about tenders be released in a timelier manner. (http://nslegislature.ca/index.php/proceedings/hansard/C89/house_12dec05/).

Belliveau finds it ironic that the Liberals are actually releasing information about upcoming tenders in a less timely manner than the previous government.

“It’s funny, last year when it came to releasing the 5-year plan the Liberals were demanding the government hurry-up. Now one-year later the Liberal message has changed to hurry up and wait.”

Belliveau is also hopeful the Liberals will begin publishing a rural roads plan this year, something the NDP committed to during the election.

“Let’s face it, the Liberals promised they would be open and transparent but so far serious questions have been raised about patronage and a failure to disclose tender information,” added Belliveau. “When it comes to paving, the Liberals can chose to operate behind closed doors, or they can demonstrate some transparency by implementing the NDP’s plan for a published rural roads plan.”