Labor puts all on line at community forum in High Wycombe

PUBLIC transport, aged care, local jobs and environmental concerns were key issues at a community forum with State Opposition MPs in High Wycombe on Monday.

Opposition portfolio MPs met residents to identify issues of high significance in suburbs around Forrestfield.

Forrestfield is the final station along the Government’s planned Perth-Airport Rail and many comments focussed on public transport from Kalamunda to the foothills.

The Opposition’s Metronet policy also highlights the need to finish the Airport Line, but is underpinned by the creation of a circle route rail system to provide cross-suburban connections.

Several residents at the meeting said the public transport system in Kalamunda was inadequate and a better service was needed immediately.

Opposition leader Mark McGowan agreed more needed to be done to improve bus services for residents.

“The current timeframe shows the Forrestfield station won’t be operating until 2020, so it is crucial bus services are improved in the interim,” he said.

WA Labor has been holding meetings in areas identified as “Metrohubs” to talk to communities and help shape policies in the lead up to the 2017 state election.

Declining employment and the ongoing methamphetamine scourge were also discussed.

According to Mr McGowan, diversifying the economy and providing training for future jobs – manufacturing, science, IT, tourism and downstream processing – was a priority for the area.

The Metronet plan appeared to pass the “pub test” at the community forum.

“Feedback reinforced the need for an integrated and coordinated system,” Mr McGowan said.

“This is what Metronet will be; it will provide Shire of Kalamunda residents the opportunity to catch a train and connect with the Forrestfield hub.”