Media | Local News

Local News - October 2021


22nd October 2021


“I welcome the announcement by the Federal Government of the taskforce to examine the impacts of regional bank branch closures,” Mrs Frecklington said.

“This is an issue which is seriously affecting our community, with many branch closures across our region over the past few years, the most recent announcement being ANZ in Kingaroy.

“I would encourage anyone affected by bank branch closures to have their say when the taskforce opens up for public consultation,” Deb said.



A Regional Banking Taskforce has been established by the Liberal and Nationals Government to assess the impact of bank branch closures on regional communities.

The Taskforce will bring together banks and other key stakeholders to assess how bank branch closures have impacted local businesses, industries and communities and work collaboratively to identify possible solutions.

Minister for Regionalisation Bridget McKenzie said the taskforce will provide a platform to establish how the transformation within the banking industry, particularly branch closures, has affected those living in the regions.

“Having access to bank branches is vital for every community, particularly for residents who are unable to use online services to conduct their banking.

“As we have heard, bank branch closures in the regions also affect the liveability of towns, and so I am pleased to announce this taskforce will be looking at how we can keep banking services in rural Australia,” Minister McKenzie said.

Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar welcomed the formation of the Taskforce to evaluate the impact of bank branch closures in regional Australia.

“The Regional Banking Taskforce will enable the Government to work closely with the banks and local communities to assess how these services can best be delivered in our regions,” Minister Sukkar said.

Senator for NSW Perin Davey said that the establishment of the Taskforce represented a significant milestone, as it brought the opportunity not only to enquire into issues, but also to bring together stakeholders to find solutions.

“A taskforce is an important step forward because it will allow us to draw on the knowledge of the banks and businesses to find workable solutions to this issue,” she said.

“Banks and financial service providers have communicated to me a desire to find ways to service regional communities, and I look forward to exploring those constructive avenues through this

The Co-Chairs of the Taskforce are:

  • Assistant Treasurer, Minister for Housing and Minister for Homelessness, Social and Community Housing the Hon. Michael Sukkar (as Co-Chair) reporting to the Treasurer and
  • Senator Perin Davey (as Co-Chair) reporting to the Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience and Minister for Regionalisation, Regional Communications and Regional Education, Senator the Hon. Bridget McKenziE

    Members include senior representatives from:
  • Banks – ANZ; Commonwealth Bank of Australia; National Australia Bank; Westpac; Bendigo and Adelaide Bank; Bank of Queensland;
  • Peak bodies – the Australian Banking Association, the Customer Owned Banking Association; the Council of Small Business Organisations Australia; the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry;
  • Australia Post; and
  • The Australian Local Government Association.

The Taskforce will hold its first meeting in early November and will release an issues paper for public consultation.

The Regional Banking Taskforce and the Government’s support for rural and regional communities is part of our economic plan to support the recovery and keep Australians together.

Joint Media Statement - Cherbourg & District Vaccination rates

21st October 2021

Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington and Federal Member for Wide Bay, Llew O’Brien



Now is the time to step up and get vaccinated against COVID 19.

Together with the Cherbourg Council both Federal Member for Wide Bay, Llew O’Brien and State Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington are calling on their community to protect themselves against COVID.

Now that we have better access to vaccines in our region we encourage community members to take up this opportunity and get vaccinated so we can look after our family and friends.

Labor excludes Somerset and Lockyer from home quarantine trial

11th October 2021

Member for Nanango, Deb Frecklington says the Labor Government has forgotten the Somerset and Lockyer again, with the areas not included in the home quarantine trial.

Mrs Frecklington said the exclusion of the Somerset and Lockyer from the trial is extremely disappointing.

“People from the Somerset and Lockyer have been completely overlooked to be a part of this quarantine trial,” Mrs Frecklington said.

“These regions are both less than two hours from Brisbane and are largely rural.

“It is difficult to accept, especially as the State Government have been including our communities in the south-east Queensland COVID-19 restrictions for some time now.

“This is just another example of the State Government disregarding the Somerset and Lockyer when it suits them,” Deb said.

Member for Lockyer, Jim McDonald said, “Our community has shared the pain of lockdowns and restrictions, but are now getting no benefit from this sensible home quarantine trial.”

“Our rural communities are spacious and in fact provide the ideal location for home quarantine,” Mr McDonald said.

“We call on the Labor Government to do the right thing and extend the home quarantine trial to the Somerset and Lockyer areas,” Deb said.

ANZ Kingaroy impending closure

8th October 2021

“The South Burnett continues to be hit with bank closures and this time it’s ANZ Kingaroy who will abandon their regional customers,” Mrs Frecklington said.

“I have been advised that ANZ Kingaroy will close its doors in March 2022, leaving behind thousands of business, community group and individual customers.

“This will be the third ANZ branch to leave my Nanango Electorate, with Kilcoy and Toogoolawah also closed over recent years.

“Unfortunately, this is now the common theme for the big banks, who believe they can service their customers just as well online.

“However, it will also be necessary for community groups, businesses and many individual customers to have access to face-to-face banking services. And we all know that many people in regional areas have poor internet connection, or no computer access at all, so internet banking isn’t always the answer.

“The other thing that we’re seeing in regional Queensland is the issue of cybercrime. More and more people are being targeted in scams and there is a genuine need for victims of these crimes to be able to access their bank in person to discuss their situation.

“I am hugely disappointed with the ANZ Bank and their decision to strip services from the South Burnett,” Mrs Frecklington said.