Victorian Liberal MPs have successfully moved for Victoria’s Parliament to conduct an inquiry into regional fuel prices.
Fuel comes at a high price for regional Victorians – many hours are spent each week travelling to work, into town for services and taking the kids to school or weekend sports, putting further pressure on already high cost-of-living.
The inquiry will look at the impacts of pricing on country families, businesses and communities and examine discrepancies between regional communities.
“This is a huge issue locally with drivers in Maryborough, Stawell, Ararat, Miners Rest, Beaufort, Lucas, Avoca, Creswick, Clunes, St Arnaud and Donald all scratching their heads in frustration at the petrol pumps”, Member for Ripon Louise Staley said.
“Country people have to dig deep every time they fill up at the bowser and then face the prospect of more travel – it is just unavoidable.
“The Liberals have listened to community concerns and hope this inquiry can lift the lid on country fuel prices.”
The inquiry will look into pricing of unleaded, diesel and LPG fuels and:
Examine the methodology behind pricing, particularly the divide between metropolitan and regional communities
Consider approaches and initiatives elsewhere in Australia, with a view to reducing fuel prices
Look at fuel price comparison technology
Investigate the impact of pricing on families, businesses and industry
Assess the influence of regulations and legislation on fuel pricing
Shadow Minister for Community Safety Ed O’Donohue who moved the motion in Parliament to set up the inquiry said long-distance travel is unavoidable for many country people.
“I think an important context to understand is in places where transport and fuel options are limited there often is not the same choice of jumping on the bus, train or making alternative travel arrangements if petrol is too expensive or if the price goes up,” Mr O’Donohue said.
“This is for many people across regional Victoria an issue of a fixed cost. The question has to be asked: why does that cost vary so significantly in areas where there seems little rationale or understanding for that.”
Fuel prices are just one of the cost-of-living pressures Victorians can share with the CostWatch website, www.costwatch.com.au
The CostWatch campaign is committed to driving down costs and making your dollar stretch further.