WANNON MP Dan Tehan says it's time to get on with the job and start Princes Highway upgrade works.
His comments come as the federal government is seeking public road and rail projects - like upgrades to the Princes Highway between Warrnambool and Port Fairy - that can be fast-tracked to stimulate a soft economy.
The coalition is considering "shovel-ready" small- to medium-sized infrastructure projects, The Australian Financial Review reported on Tuesday.
Member for Wannon Dan Tehan, who is also the federal education minister, pledged $60 million for an upgrade of the highway between Warrnambool and Port Fairy and another $80 million on roads around Portland.
The potential project acceleration could add to the stimulus expected to flow from the government's planned income tax cuts and current lower interest rates.
"If the state government continues to stall then what I am prepared to say, and I have spoken to the deputy Prime Minister and the Minister for Transport about this, is why don't we just go first," he said.
"The money is there - let's get them (state government) spending our money. Then they can put in their contribution at the end. If they have huge state debt and their budget is out of control, then we are prepared to say 'our money is there, get going, spend it, then make your contribution.' I'd love to be able to pick the shovel and the crow bar up and get going, but they are state government roads, so we need them to do it."
In addition, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has admitted some of the nation's most vulnerable veterans are being failed by federal government agencies.
The prime minister has called for urgent departmental briefings, in response to accounts of veterans taking their own lives.
"We recognise the seriousness of the problem and appreciate the candour and the work that has been done to ensure these issues are being raised," his spokesman told The Daily Telegraph on Tuesday.
Mr Morrison wants to ensure money tied to a $500 million revamp of the Department of Veterans' Affairs hits the mark.
"Ahead of the release of the final productivity commission report into DVA's rehab and compensation system, the PM will consider all options to ensure our veterans receive the utmost support and care," his spokesman said.
"And that the system, which is failing some of our most vulnerable veterans despite our ongoing investments, is fixed."
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