State Government rejects calls for light rail referendum

The State Government has slammed calls for a referendum on the light rail extension from Broadbeach to Burleigh Heads.

Mermaid Beach MP Ray Stevens has joined several Gold Coast MPs in voicing concerns about Stage 3A.

Mr Stevens told State Parliament the matter should be put to the people.


“The referendum should be all-inclusive of residents on the rolls in those areas and should take place immediately before the project is set in stone,” Mr Stevens said.

Mr Stevens claimed Stage 3B to the airport would be difficult to achieve and argued that if it can’t go to the airport it shouldn’t go to Burleigh either.

He also raised the prospect of more high-rise developments along the light rail route.

Burleigh MP Michael Hart and Currumbin MP Jann Stuckey have also voiced concerns about the extension.

But Transport Minister Mark Bailey has ridiculed the idea of a referendum and urged those MPs to get on board.

“It’s very disappointing to see such a thing, Gold Coast LNP MPs putting barriers up to Light Rail Stage 3,” Mr Bailey said.

“It’s got a huge amount of support, 80 per cent of Gold Coast residents support it and want to see it as soon as possible and yet we’ve got this suggestion from Ray Stevens and all different views from the local LNP on the Gold Coast.”

“They’re really at sixes and sevens on the Gold Coast when all they have to do is listen to Gold Coast residents.”

The battle over the light rail extension comes amid reports Stage 3A could be fast tracked with construction possibly starting next year.

A final business case will be completed by the end of this year.