‘North will not be left on sideline’
QUEENSLAND Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says she will make sure the Federal Government doesn't forget about North Queensland while standing by her own Brisbane-centric cabinet.
Earlier this week the Townsville Bulletin called for State Government portfolios most relevant to North Queensland to be put in the hands of regional members.
The ministers for mining, agriculture, tourism and even the Great Barrier Reef are all based in Brisbane while only two of the 18 Queensland ministers are from North or Central Queensland seats.
While in Townsville yesterday, Ms Palaszczuk defended her ministers.
"Every single member of my team is a member of the Queensland Government so we act in the interest of Queenslanders, no matter where they live," she said.
"I wake up every day and think how we can improve jobs for Queenslanders no matter where they live.
"We are interlinked and we want the best for everyone, we want to grow resources, we want to grow agriculture, we want to grow tourism …
"We have great opportunities here in Queensland and we want to capture them."
Ms Palaszczuk then turned her attention to the Federal Government, claiming she would make sure Prime Minister Scott Morrison understood the needs of North Queenslanders.
"Queensland is a huge state, we are a decentralised state and North Queensland, Far North Queensland, is very different from Canberra," she said.
"I want to make sure the Federal Government continues to deliver for Queensland no matter where Queenslanders live."
The Premier's comments came in the wake of her demand for a time frame on the controversial Adani Carmichael coal mine project.
Ms Palaszczuk snapped back at suggestions her demands were a backflip.
"It's not a new position, OK," she said. "My position has always been about jobs for Queenslanders."
Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said the problem had been the changing of the goalposts for Adani.
"If Adani met the requirements for the Federal Government you would like to think it would be fairly easy to then to reach the requirements required by state agencies," Cr Hill said.
"What we don't want to see is the state agencies constantly moving the goalposts because they may not like an industry.
"Fundamentally what this community wants is jobs."