• Michelle Landry MP

Why can’t Byrne fast-track jobs at Rookwood?

Fast Facts:

  • If Bill Byrne has the power to ‘fast track’ things, why not fast-track Rookwood?

  • Byrne is dancing with the Meat Workers Union which shut down Rocky’s beef export abattoir in the past.

  • Farmers report Byrne as the ‘worst Ag Minister in Qld history’

Why can’t Byrne fast-track jobs at Rookwood?

State Agriculture Minister Bill Byrne and his Premier should focus on fast-tracking the sign off for Rookwood Weir and create 2,100 new jobs for local people.

That was the blunt message today from Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry on news that Byrne will fast-track a local beef inquiry around Defence activity.

“Byrne has proven to be an incredibly lazy Labor state member for Rockhampton. He has been caught with his pants down, boasting that he has the power to order things to be fast-tracked. Well, why hasn’t he fast-tracked the state’s contribution for Rookwood Weir by now?” Ms Landry said.

“If Bill Byrne had any agricultural integrity and was serious about local jobs, he would fast-track the Premier’s sign-off on Rookwood Weir and the 2,100 new jobs it would create.

“The people of Rockhampton and Central Queensland are waiting on their state MP to push for Rookwood to generate new agricultural wealth and opportunities for our city, but Bill Byrne continues to let the down.”

Ms Landry warned that Byrne’s beef inquiry north of Rockhampton was premature, until Defence clearly outlines what land area it actually requires for the Shoalwater upgrade, as part of Australia’s national security and anti-terrorism training plan.

“The Federal Minister for Defence Marise Payne was in Rockhampton on Monday to meet with local landholders and already stated that she ordered Defence to have their business analysis done within the next four weeks. This will provide clarity to landholders and their families in the region by showing the exact footprint the Defence plan will take.

“Until that footprint is made clear by Defence, Bill Byrne, like the rest of us, has no idea of what that exact impact will be. If Byrne can spend time fast-tracking things, without even seeing a final business plan; then he should fast-track projects where there is a clear plan available – like Rookwood Weir or making Rockhampton a key airport hub for the Adani coal mine project,” Ms Landry said.

“People need to open their eyes to Bill Byrne. Everyone knows he is lazy. Everyone knows he doesn’t have the guts to fight for Rockhampton. That’s why he hasn’t arranged to for his Labor government to sign off on Rookwood. And that’s why he refused to back Rockhampton Regional Council’s bid to be a major air hub for Adani.

“Farmers near Marlborough were only telling me the other day that they rate Bill Byrne as among the worst Agriculture Ministers in the state’s history.”

The media shouldn’t forget what the meat workers union did to this city:

Ms Landry said people should understand that Bill Byrne and the Labor Party are trying to hoodwink local people into believing they care - when in fact they want to rally about Shoalwater’s $1 billion investment into Central Qld, while standing beside the CMFEU and Meat Workers Union.

“People in Rockhampton and our beef producers should never forget the days when the Meat Workers Union would violently picket outside Lakes Creek abattoir in an attempt to shut it down and halt beef meat production. Now, Byrne and the union claim they are standing up for the beef processing sector. Their con-job is beyond belief.

“I ask this question: What Agriculture Minister, who cares about our farmers and our beef sector, would be willing to picket with a Meat Workers Union? This is the same union that bludgeoned our beef processing industry to death through strikes in Rockhampton more than a decade ago.”


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©2020 by Michelle Landry MP