Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett.
Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett. Geordi Offord

Burnett MP 'not convinced' Bundy needs a jobs committee

BURNETT MP Stephen Bennett isn't convinced the region needs another committee when there is already a crying need for a Wide Bay Burnett Regional Plan.

"The Palaszczuk Labor Government constantly demonstrates their unwillingness to invest in the growth of our regions,” Mr Bennett said.

The NewsMail sought comment from Mr Bennett in the wake of the Queensland Government's Skills for Queensland program.

The program will see the government commit $32m to fund apprecticeships across the state.

READ: Push for Bundaberg jobs committee.

Another element is the establishment of regional jobs committees.

While details are scarce at this early stage, a leading educator and business spokesman have supported a Bundaberg jobs committee.

"Again and again, I've asked the Palaszczuk Government to provide a time frame for a Wide Bay Burnett Regional Plan and again and again they have deflected and avoided an answer,” Mr Bennett said.

"Yes, our region is crying out for jobs, development and government commitment and all we're seeing are empty promises and more delays.

"We need cooperation from all levels of government and industry to deliver projects to help drive the local economy and create jobs.

"Queensland has the second worst unemployment rate in the country under this Labor Government. But Annastacia Palaszczuk introduced nine new taxes since the last election and business confidence is in freefall.

"We're seeing the same story when it comes to our State Development Area.

"Disappointingly, we have not seen the Labor Government do anything or commit anything to progress the SDA in five years.

"They treat the Hinkler Regional Deal like a political football, but it's the very thing that will boost exports and create jobs for locals.”

Mr Bennett said the Queensland Government wasn't create jobs.

"Their last budget saw the bulk of infrastructure spending going to Brisbane and crumbs for the regions,” he said.

"The number of TAFE students in Queensland has slumped by more than 45,000 since 2013.

"Investing in apprenticeships and trades is something the LNP wholly supports. But without loosening the noose on Queensland businesses and the retail sector, are there going to be businesses to employ trained apprentices at the end?”