KAP candidate for Dawson Brendan Bunyan campaigned in the Whitsundays this week ahead of the federal election.
KAP candidate for Dawson Brendan Bunyan campaigned in the Whitsundays this week ahead of the federal election. Claudia Alp

Bunyan's push for lower costs and sustainable industries

KATTER'S Australian Party candidate for Dawson Brendan Bunyan said cost-cutting and creating sustainable industries will be his primary focus if elected in May.

Mr Bunyan visited the Lions Airlie Beach Community Markets on April 6 as part of his campaign ahead of the federal election.

He said an immediate reduction in the cost of living as well as the establishment of nation-building industries would be vital to the Whitsunday region.

"If we could get a 25 per cent reduction in the cost of living, what that'll do is essentially take the profits that the multi-nationals are currently making and get back to enjoying life,” he told the Whitsunday Times.

"Most people I'm talking to on the streets aren't enjoying their life at the minute. It's the downward pressure from the cost of living that's really hurting them.”

A project Mr Bunyan said he wanted to see in motion was an ethanol mandate, which would lower oil prices and reduce the reliance on imported oil.

"We need to make sure that we can grow our industry and for places like Mackay, Proserpine and the Burdekin, that we can fit in that space, reduce the cost of fuel and create more jobs straight away if we actually push to a correct ethanol mandate,” he said.

Mr Bunyan, a mechanic by trade from Ayr, said he had talked to local business owners to gage what people in the electorate wanted from their parliamentary representative.

Mining and agriculture topped the list.

"I've talked to business people and they say if you get mining and agriculture right, the money flows in,” he said.

"If we can get that right, Airlie Beach picks up. If we look at Proserpine, another town I grew up in, we could make that a hub for sending fresh produce out of the airport there to the Asian market.”

When it comes to coal-mining, Mr Bunyan said the "feel-good” had to be taken out of politics.

"People have a view that CO2 is bad for the environment. But when you look at how many parts per million the CO2 currently is, it actually shows that it's not a damaging level,” he said.

"We need to take the feel-good out of politics and just have the facts and figures and make sure we can have a sustainable industry and a sustainable economy.”

The KAP candidate said he was disappointed with the divide between city and rural politics.

"Unfortunately there are people in politics that are out of touch with what goes on in the world and the general public's over it,” Mr Bunyan said.

"Parties like KAP resonate with a lot of people because we're everyday people. We've got real jobs.

"We may not be fancy, but we're practical and that's what people want from a government these days.”

As the federal election looms, Mr Bunyan said KAP had gained momentum in North Queensland.

"We've got die-hard Labor supporters who understand their party's essentially left them in the lurch with some of their policies,” he said.

"We've also got the people off the farms who know they've been let down by the Nationals.

"If you were to ask me two months ago I would have said it (the election) will be interesting.

"But I think we're making some good headway and whenever the election is called I think the people of Dawson will be very surprised and very happy in the choice they make in myself.”