Newspaper article Fraser Coast Chronicle (Hervey Bay, Australia)

Jobs and Roads as Candidates Top of Agenda Face Our Forum

Newspaper article Fraser Coast Chronicle (Hervey Bay, Australia)

Jobs and Roads as Candidates Top of Agenda Face Our Forum

Article excerpt

SOME minor party candidates could give the LNP and ALP candidates a shake in the September 7 election, based on their performance at the Chronicle's election forum.

A small crowd of committed Hinkler voters heard five of the seven candidates present their case for election. Independent Reid Schirmer and Green Mark Simpson did not attend.

We present here a potted version of their responses to some of the questions at the forum.

Will you commit funds to the Fraser Coast's three main infrastructure projects (Mary Marina, Aviation and Sport and Recreation precinct)? If so, how much? If not, what are your plans to fix the Fraser Coast's job crisis?

Keith Pitt, LNP: We are happy to support projects which are supported by the local community. Responsible economic managers do not commit tens of millions of dollars two weeks out from the election.

Leanne Donaldson, ALP: Without being able to commit specific funds, it's really important that projects that deliver that are larger than an individual company can provide for seed funding, these are the types of things that government needs to look at. Infrastructure is attractive to investors and provides jobs a[degrees] and flow-on effect. I am keen to look at these types of opportunities Where it is viable and where there is investor interest.

Troy Sullivan, Family First: We will be looking at whether we can afford the different things that are put on the table, so we are accountable for what we spend. As a community we can pull together and do projects for ourselves.

David Dalgleish, Katter's Australia Party: I was part of the council when these subjects came up. I totally support these projects. I can't make any promises about funding. Infrastructure creates jobs. We need major projects of regional significance

Rob Messenger, Palmer United Party: At this stage I am personally committed to those projects. We are working out a budget.

What will you do to upgrade the Maryborough/Hervey Bay Rd for increased tourist traffic?

Donaldson: The Labor government has a strong record of delivering road infrastructure. As you drive up and down the Bruce Highway you can see the roadwork going on. Labor will continue to deliver to ensure that tourists aren't turned away or distracted from coming here because of inadequate roadways.

Sullivan: The best way forward is a collaborative approach with all local, state and federal guys all getting together and working out a plan of how we can do it maybe over the next five years.

Dalgleish: We need a full upgrade of the road, we don't need patches or little extra passing lanes. We need it full dual lane, but let's not forget the Bruce Highway.

Messenger: The Palmer United Party has a policy of investing 7.5 billion in our road infrastructure. I will be there arguing for the upgrade. …

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