With the budget announced this week I believe it is an important time for me to update my community on the issues they have raised with me since becoming the member for Strathfield. These issues are over-development; improvements to transport; easing road congestion as well as improving safety; upgrades to our schools that are under pressure from significant population growth; homelessness, which is raised with me a lot in Burwood in particular; and the upgrade of Concord Hospital.
Before the 2015 election Labor made a commitment in relation to Concord hospital.We committed some $340 million, which was matched by the Liberal-Nationals Government, and we were very appreciative of that. However, I am concerned that there has not been any work on that commitment and according to the budget the completion date is now 2023. That is just too far into the never-never. There has also been no commitment to the $700 million stage two upgrade. Anyone who has visited Concord hospital knows that the entire hospital is in need of an upgrade.
On 1 July the buses in my electorate are to be privatised as part of Andrew Constance's ideological agenda around privatisation, which was so acutely evident in Tuesday's budget. This has not been well received by my community. Last November our timetables were up-ended. Since that time numerous disruptions have been experienced on the Inner West line. We are hopeful that the Government will introduce changes to the timetable so that those who travel by train in my electorate will get a better deal. I am very thankful for the station upgrades at Homebush, Homebush West and Croydon railway stations. In the budget the Treasurer also announced that there will be planning money for North Strathfield station. That is a very busy station on the Northern Line and the member for Drummoyne and I have raised this matter on numerous occasions.
Unfortunately, it is only planning money. There is no money to progress any work on that station. With the Sydney Metro West there is also the possibility of a stop at North Strathfield or Concord West. Labor is supportive of the Sydney Metro West but only $3 billion in funding has been allocated for it in the budget. This should be a priority project. It is a priority transport project for Labor, but the Government has it at the bottom of the list.
In the budget there was money for WestConnex. The people in my electorate are not opposed to the M4 East tunnel but there is no guarantee that it will get traffic off Parramatta Road. It would be a good thing if it did get traffic off Parramatta Road, but I suggest that motorists will avoid using the M4 and the M4 East and come back onto Parramatta Road because they do not want to pay the tolls. We will also be getting some funding under the Pinch Point Program for improvements to Parramatta Road and the intersections of Shaftsbury Road at Burwood and the Great North Road at Five Dock. There will also be improvements to Georges River Road at the intersection of Portland Street and Lees Avenue at Croydon Park. It has been so difficult to get this funding. I have lobbied hard to see safety improvements at Frederick Street, for instance, and we are still battling with Roads and Maritime Services about improvements to Flemington Street, an incredibly dangerous area in Homebush West.
Homebush West is one of the fastest growing areas in my electorate. I am thankful for the $20 million in funding that has been allocated to Homebush West Public School. Croydon Public School is also in desperate need of an upgrade, but no start or completion dates or costing has been allocated in the budget. So a promise has been made about that school but there is nothing to back it up. Marie Bashir Public School, the newest school in my electorate, will receive some funding. Disappointingly, many other schools in my electorate in desperate need of attention have not been allocated any funding—schools such as Burwood Public School and Chalmers Road School, which caters for children with intellectual disabilities. Strathfield Girls High School and Homebush Boys High School both need school halls.
It would be remiss of me not to mention the concerns of my constituents about overdevelopment in my electorate. They are not opposed to high-rise buildings but they are concerned about inappropriate developments such as on the former Vision Australia and the Enfield Flower Power sites. They are also concerned about buildings that have been poorly designed and built—for example, the buildings along Railway Parade, Burwood. My constituents are also concerned about the number of boarding houses in our area. This is a smoke and mirrors budget; I would have liked to have seen more.