Landmark report highlights critical needs for more public transport funding in Tasmania

Tasmanians are being short-changed on public transport, and more funding is needed to bring the state’s public transport services up to scratch.


The McKell Institute’s landmark report into Tasmanian public bus services, titled A Better Deal, shows that on a per capita basis, the Tasmanian Government spends less on public transport than any other State or Territory Government in Australia.

Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) Tasmanian Branch Secretary Byron Cubit today that while the McKell Institute report was sobering reading, its recommendations outlined a way forward to better public transport in Tasmania.

“Tasmanians deserve better from their public transport network,” Mr Cubit said.

“We need to see more funding for services, stronger laws to protect public transport workers, and Metro Tasmania brought back under the direct control of the State Government.

“The Metro Tasmania board seems more focused on making a profit than providing an essential public service.

“Once the fundamentals have been fixed, Metro staff retention problems have been addressed, and suspended services have been reinstated, then the government must look at expanding services into priority areas.

“As the McKell Institute report states, ‘equal service is not equitable service’. Priority must be given to increasing services to parts of Tasmania that are most in need of access to public transport.

“With transport congestion becoming more acute, and the cost-of-living crisis biting, the case for better public transport in Tasmania has never been so strong.”