Queensland's new flora survey trigger maps designed to protect threatened or endangered plants have been exposed as error ridden and are creating considerable frustration and angst for landholders throughout the state*.
LNP Shadow Minister for the Environment David Crisafulli said allowing defective maps to be rolled out put unnecessary bureaucratic and financial obligations on landholders.
“These farcical trigger maps on landmarks like The Gabba, Suncorp Stadium and Sunshine Coast canals makes a mockery of a system designed to protect our ‘high-risk’ and endangered flora,” Mr Crisafulli said.
“By having maps not properly assessed by the Government and then forcing them on landholders destroys confidence in the whole system.
“It again shows these laws were based on politics, not science.
“Landholders are now having to spend thousands of dollars on consultants to get these trigger maps on their land removed, yet the government is just dropping them willy-nilly.”
“We need mapping that gets the balance right between the environment and landholders, so the community can have confidence in the system.
“It’s time for Minister Enoch to come out and take responsibility for this train wreck rather than just relying on landholders to fix her incompetency.
“This mapping is the worst of both worlds and cannot be allowed to remain unchanged.”
“Labor needs to understand that government incompetence has real-world implications well beyond George Street.
“The LNP understands how bad science and green ideology can hurt rural and regional Queensland”.
How to view the Qld's flora trigger maps – as reported on Queensland Country Life*
* Palaszczuk's trigger mapping exposed as a joke - Queensland Country Life article: https://www.queenslandcountrylife.com.au/story/6221102/vegetation-management-trigger-mapping-exposed-as-a-joke/
LNP Shadow Minister for Agriculture Tony Perrett has slammed the Palaszczuk Labor Government for failing to provide certainty on electricity prices for Queensland farmers and irrigators.
“It’s good to see Labor has bowed to pressure from the LNP after we called for an extension to the tariff deadline in January,” Mr Perrett said.
“We called for the delay because it was obvious Labor didn’t have a plan.
“The Palaszczuk Labor Government has once again failed to put an end to the crisis facing more than 14,800 customers* on existing obsolete farming and irrigation tariffs (T62, 65 and 66), which are set to be switched off.
“Today’s announcement to delay the inevitable simply kicks the issue into the long grass instead of providing farmers and industry with the certainty they have been calling for.
“Labor have strategically delayed the date on which farmers and businesses will receive massive electricity price increases until after the October 2020 election.
“The LNP understands how important water and electricity is to regional jobs.
“Through the LNP’s Agriculture Council, we continue to engage with key agricultural groups such as the Queensland Farmers’ Federation, CANEGROWERS, Cotton Australia, Growcom and AgForce to find industry-led solutions.”
Mr Perrett said the LNP has been calling for a complete overhaul and restructure of Queensland’s tariff structure designed to support our agricultural businesses and regional jobs.
“We are hearing loud and clear the industry doesn’t just need a single new ‘Agriculture tariff’ to solve its concerns,” Mr Perrett said.
“It needs a suite of new electricity tariffs that appropriately reflect the diverse needs of modern agricultural production in this state.
“The LNP has already committed to ending the divide between the southeast and the rest of regional Queensland by introducing competition into the retail electricity market which will see decreases in regional electricity prices.
“We will continue to fight for lower electricity prices cheaper water for Queensland agriculture.
“That is what’s needed to create jobs and provide job security in regional communities.”
*Obsolete and transitional tariff customer numbers: https://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/documents/tableOffice/questionsAnswers/2019/853-2019.pdf
Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington, has asked how many times the Labor Government will announce funding for the Kilkivan Fire Station in their State Budget – with 2019/20 being the third year the project has been announced.
Ms Frecklington said it unacceptable the funding keeps getting re-announced, and Kilkivan still doesn’t have a new fire station.
“The Kilkivan Fire Station has been announced three years in a row. The Labor Government keeps treating the Kilkivan community like fools,” Ms Frecklington said.
“It’s very worrying though that no works have actually started on the Kilkivan Fire Station. Surely Labor has to come clean and explain what is going on.
“And when it comes to the road network in the western part of the Gympie region, there is no funding at all for State network roads in the western Gympie region.
“Roads like Kilkivan-Tansey Road, Running Creek Bridge near Woolooga, and the Burnett Highway have simply been forgotten,” Deb said.
“After five years in power, all Labor is delivering is higher taxes, more debt, less jobs and less infrastructure. They are borrowing more and building less,” Deb said.
Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington, says South Burnett road infrastructure has been overlooked for the fifth year in a row under the Labor Government.
Mrs Frecklington said the 2019/20 State Budget doesn’t address the need for road upgrades needed across the South Burnett.
“Roads like the D’Aguilar Highway, Bunya Highway, Kingaroy-Barkers Creek Road, Burrandowan Road and Maidenwell-Bunya Mountains Road have received no funding,” Mrs Frecklington said.
“In light of the recent road tragedies in our region, I would have hoped to have seen some consideration of funding for our road network.
“This is very disappointing for our community but it’s to be expected from this city-centric Labor Government.
“One of the great lies of this budget is that it is for regional Queensland. The money Labor is actually spending on infrastructure is being funnelled into a handful of inner-Brisbane electorates for their pet project Cross River Rail.
Across the region, Mrs Frecklington said several infrastructure projects have simply been re-announced.
“This is the third year in a row Labor have announced the Kilkivan Fire Station. It’s very worrying that no works have actually started on the Kilkivan Fire Station. Surely Labor has to come clean and explain what is going on.
“It’s the second year they’ve announced the Yarraman Fire Station, and funding previously announced for the Wooroolin Fire Station has actually disappeared from the budget papers.
“I welcome the announcement for Murgon State High school which commits $3.4 million for a new Hall and Administration Building. This is long overdue and I was pleased to support the students, staff, families and community who deserve this important facility,” Deb said.
Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington has officially welcomed the Nanango Electorate’s 2019 Youth Member, Natalia Hutchison, to her role and congratulated her on taking on this important challenge.
Mrs Frecklington caught up with Natalia in Brisbane, where Natalia works full-time as a Paralegal for the Brisbane City Council.
“It was a privilege to meet Natalia and hear about her work, studies and community involvement,” Mrs Frecklington said.
“Not only does she work full-time, she is undertaking a double degree in Arts/Law and has chosen to represent her home region of Kilcoy as this year’s Youth Member for Nanango.
“Natalia’s work ethic is to be admired and it’s fantastic to see a young woman like Natalia taking up this leadership role and bringing her energy to the Youth Parliament experience.
“She is a very driven person and an amazing role model for other young regional women who want to step up and get involved in creating positive change for our community.
“I was also impressed by her sense of community and the ongoing connection she has with her hometown of Kilcoy. She has a keen interest in communicating with young people that growing up in a small town is not seen as a disadvantage, but rather an opportunity – a belief I also firmly share,” Deb said.
The YMCA Youth Parliament is an annual program which teaches young people about the government decision-making process, while providing leadership opportunities for young people who may one day become Queensland’s future decision makers.
Natalia will join more than 90 other young people from around Queensland who have each been selected to represent their Electorates, debate issues facing our youth and develop legislation that they will take to a residential week at Parliament House from 29 September – 5 October.
Photo: Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington, with the Nanango Electorate’s Youth Member, Natalia Hutchison.
The Palaszczuk Labor Government’s anti-resources and anti-regions agenda could force New Acland mine to lay-off half its workforce in what would be a hammer-blow for the community.
Liberal National Party Shadow Minister for Mines Dale Last blasted the Palaszczuk Labor Government for endless delays and deliberate attempts to sabotage job-creating projects like New Acland in rural and regional Queensland.
“The Palaszczuk Labor Government is anti-regions, anti-resources and anti-jobs,” Mr Last said.
“Job losses at New Acland could be avoided if the Labor Government signs off on stage 3 of the project before September 1, but Labor is disgracefully refusing to give the green light.
“The loss of more than 150 jobs in a town like Oakey will have a devastating impact on the community.
“Queenslanders expect our resource projects to meet high environmental and social standards, but they also expect job-creating projects like New Acland stage 3 to get a fair-go.
“To make matters worse, the Palaszczuk Government funds the very group, the Environmental Defenders Office, that continues to derail this project through the legal system.
“Labor will stop at nothing to kill off new job-creating resource projects in regional Queensland.”
LNP MP for Condamine Pat Weir said the Labor Government’s refusal to give certainty around the approval process is tearing the community apart.
“The people of Oakey just want more jobs and an economic future, but Labor isn’t listening,” Mr Weir said.
“Jobs are at stake as well as the local businesses which rely on the mine.
“It’s not just the direct jobs that are created, the local impact on our economy is a game-changer.
“Labor Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy Anthony Lynham could sign off on stage 3 tomorrow, but the government is happy to watch these jobs go down the drain.
“The LNP will always stand up for jobs and regional communities.
“Rural and regional Queenslanders see straight through this Labor Government’s Brisbane-centric agenda.”
Queensland farmers are staring down the barrel of crushing water price increases under the Palaszczuk Labor Government.
The review currently underway by the Queensland Competition Authority highlighted several irrigation schemes facing significant and unsustainable price increases.
LNP Shadow Minister for Natural Resources Dale Last said a submission from peak industry group Queensland Farmers' Federation warned of potentially crippling price increases.
"Farmers are already paying sky high water and electricity prices," Mr Last said.
"Labor’s projected price increases for some irrigation schemes would be a hammer blow for farmers and local jobs.
“Based on the QFF estimates, farmers on the Lower Lockyer, Central Lockyer and Morton Vale irrigation schemes will be hit hard.
“Central Lockyer and Morton Vale irrigators will experience more than $50 per ML price increases and Lower Lockyer growers are set to be slugged with more than $38 per ML increases under Labor’s plan.
“It just goes to show that you can’t afford Labor.”
LNP MP for Lockyer Jim McDonald said the proposed price rises had the potential to wipe out irrigation in the region.
“We all know water is the lifeblood of our agriculture industries,” Mr McDonald said.
“Without water, communities like Gatton, Laidley, Grantham and Helidon will all lose production, which will cost jobs and drive up the cost of food and fibre for all Queenslanders.
“Even though price increases are capped at $2.38/ML per year plus inflation, this will mean the Lower Lockyer and Morton Vale irrigation customers are staring down the barrel of at least 17 years of consecutive water price increases.
“The message we are hearing from local farmers is that the cost of water and electricity are already too high under Labor.
“It is farcical that Labor would consider raising the cost of already unaffordable water.
"It's time for Labor to step in and guarantee the future of irrigated agriculture in Queensland."