JUST one month after the federal election, the state government has begun to attack Tony Abbott's Coalition over federal support to Tasmanian projects with the NBN, irrigation schemes and jobs funds in their sights.
Deputy Premier Bryan Green said three irrigation projects - the $13 million Dial Blythe, $15 million Southern Highlands and the $30 million South East schemes - were in limbo after ``stalling'' from the Commonwealth.
``We are on target to increase the area of new irrigated land in Tasmania by around 40 per cent, but that has always been contingent of Commonwealth support,'' Mr Green said.
The election of a Coalition government in Canberra was always expected to strain the federal-state relationship after years of Labor collaboration, however, it appears the state government is not wasting time bringing concerns front and centre.
A centrepiece of Kevin Rudd's Tasmanian election promises was the ``Jobs and Growth Plan'', originally tied to the forest peace deal and targeted towards regional economic diversification.
Implementation of those $100 million of projects was co-opted by the Coalition by leader Tony Abbott, but Economic Development Minister David O'Byrne said he did not know when the funds would arrive.
``We've now been in touch with Deputy Prime Minister Truss's office three or four times . . . we are demanding the federal government stand up for Tasmanian businesses,'' Mr O'Byrne said,
``Silence from Canberra is unacceptable.''
Opposition leader Will Hodgman distanced himself from the decisions of his Liberal counterparts in Canberra.
``I've got every confidence that they will do the right thing . . . you've got to keep in mind this is a new government that has taken over from an old government that has botched so many major projects,'' he said.
Mr Hodgman said the NBN was a similar issue, and declined several times to support a full roll-out of Labor's planned fibre to the home NBN.
``The new Coalition government has picked up a mess . . . I'll let Malcolm Turnbull and the Coalition make those decisions.''
Mr Turnbull promised prior to the election that all NBN roll-out contracts in the state would be honoured - in contrast to the mainland position of ``all existing construction contracts that are under way'' - but has not addressed the state's roll-out since winning government.
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