Dubbo residents are being invited to take part in pre-emptive action to stop any future moves to cut the Newell Highway speed limit again.
Former NSW roads minister Duncan Gay is looking for communities along the major corridor to show their support for the 110km/h speed limit.
Mr Gay reports the government has no plans to reduce the speed limit, but he’s wanting to send a clear message to those who take office in the future.
He’s mailed out a petition to households at Dubbo and other Newell Highway communities with the intention that its results will keep up the pressure for the status quo.
The state’s longest-serving roads minister, Mr Gay held the portfolio as the Coalition delivered upgrades for the major highway and returned it to a 110km/h speed limit.
The speed limit had been dropped to 100km/h by the Labor government in 2009.
It was a key commitment of the Nationals and Liberals to reinstate the 110km/h zones if elected at the 2011 poll.
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Mr Gay has launched the campaign ahead of his impending retirement after almost three decades in the NSW Parliament.
He says that as someone who lives, drives and has children and grandchildren in regional NSW, he knows the real difference improvements to country roads mean.
“Because of the money the Nationals have been able to deliver for upgrades to the Newell, we were able to raise the limit,” he said.
“The changes we put in place increasing the speed limit for cars have dramatically lowered the road toll by removing the frustration between trucks and cars at the same speed.”
“We’re still working hard to improve the highway too, with $58 million in this year’s budget for upgrades to the Newell.”
Successors of different political persuasions were in his sights in launching the campaign.
“The government has no plans to reduce the speed limit, but I want to make sure as I leave the Parliament that the pressure is there on future governments, particularly any Labor / Shooters government – that they don’t touch it either,” he said.
“I’ll be collating the responses and presenting them to my successor so they can continue to keep up this pressure for our communities.”