State Labor must contribute to second round of mobile phone blackspots funding

The State Liberals have called on the Weatherill Labor Government to contribute to the second round of funding towards mobile blackspots in South Australia.

In the last round, the Weatherill Labor Government refused to contribute any funding towards mobile blackspots, which resulted in South Australia receiving just 11 out of 499 new mobile phone base stations to be constructed across the nation.

Other states that contributed funds in addition to the $100 million Federal Government programme: 

  • NSW $24 million for 144 upgrades;
  • Victoria $21 million for 110 upgrades;
  • Queensland $10 million for 68 upgrades; and,
  • Tasmania $350,000 for 31 upgrades.

“The Weatherill Government cannot turn its back on the interests of regional South Australians again,” said Member for Stuart, Dan van Holst Pellekaan. 

“Additional mobile phone coverage would improve community safety, enhance social engagement and deliver greater commercial opportunities for regional South Australians.

“Our State Labor Government is very well aware of the needs of communities like Blinman, Marree, Oodnadatta, Innamincka and many others which receive tens of thousands of tourists every year and yet do not have mobile phone service. 

“The Weatherill Government says that tourism is one of its highest priorities for economic growth and yet will not contribute to providing the basic infrastructure that tourist have come to expect.

“It is disgraceful that people living, working and visiting rural and remote parts of our state are continually ignored by the Weatherill Government.

“The Weatherill Government pretends to care about regional communities but refuses to invest in basic infrastructure needs.”