Indi MP Helen Haines has put a $300 million ask to the federal government to support the development of a new Border hospital, plans for which are still under wraps.
Dr Haines has included the request in a budget submission and told The Border Mail it would be a third of what's needed.
"We know it would cost around $1 billion to create a world-class hospital on the Border," she said.
"But time is of the essence; we have a federal election, we have an unusual, early budget on the 29th of March, and it's really important that I advocate strongly for my border community and put a dollar figure of what an ask would be.
"Given that it is the only cross-border-health service in Australia, the expectation is that both state governments would contribute.
"It's not accurate to say that the Commonwealth doesn't contribute at all to hospital infrastructure, because they do."
While Dr Haines pointed to a $128 million federal contribution to the redevelopment of Shellharbour Hospital, Victorian Senator Jane Hume said the budget submission was misguided.
"The construction of public hospitals is a matter for state governments and has been since Federation," she said.
"Service delivery specific funding for which the federal government is responsible to Albury Wodonga Health and Albury Local Health district, has seen their funding increase 362 per cent since the Liberals came to office, at $100.1 million in the 2019-2020 Budget.
"Dr Haines should spend some time understanding the mechanics of the systems she is seeking to address.
"And when she's done so she will see it is the Andrews Labor Government which has short-changed the border region, year after year.
"The Morrison government is delivering for the border community."
The budget submission has been collated with local councils' input - an ask for $10 million for the construction of a new Beechworth pool and a pools development plan follows Indigo Shire's woes.
Other proposed infrastructure projects include a upgrade to Benalla's streetscape, a new Corryong childcare and community facility and a $40 million replacement of Benambra-Corryong Road.
Some projects, like the $32 million Falls to Hotham Alpine Crossing and an extension of the High Country Rail Trail were named in the 2020-2021 budget submission.
"Yes, many of them have been there before - it's really important that they are all identified on a budget submission," Dr Haines said.
"In an election period, we know that governments like to get out into various seats around the nation and make promises around infrastructure.
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"It's a March instead of a May budget and we all know that's because there's an election that will happen in May.
"So as the federal member for Indi, I want to make sure that the Treasurer is very clear around what the priority projects are for Indi - the ones backed by the people."
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