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NSW branch line funding falls too short: NSW farmers

<p>The state government’s latest funding for New South Wales branch lines had fallen "well short" of the level needed to sustain the lines in the future, the NSW Farmers’ Association said.</p> <p>State transport minister John Watkins’ announcement of $45m of funding over three years for the upgrade of 11 of the 15 lines was "nowhere near" the amount indicated as required in a recent audit, the association said.</p> <p>The association’s grains committee chairman Angus Macneil welcomed the funding but said the government needed to get serious about maintaining the lines in the future.</p> <p>"This funding falls well short of the $168m requirement set out in the audit, which was conducted to detail the condition of the rail tracks and the likely cost of upgrading them over the next seven years and beyond," Mr Macneil said.</p> <p>"We can no longer afford to sustain these lines with bandaid measures handed out left, right and centre." </p> <p>The association said it was concerned that there was no further funding for the roads affected by the suspension of four branch lines.</p> <p>It believes that the suspension of the four lines will result in 200,000 tonnes of grain being moved to road. </p> <br />