Call for ac­tion to cre­ate lo­cal jobs

Pilbara News - - News - Court­ney Fowler

Op­po­si­tion Leader Mark McGowan has called for the State Gov­ern­ment to take more ac­tion to cre­ate job op­por­tu­ni­ties for lo­cal con­trac­tors and ap­pren­tices in the Pil­bara, dur­ing a visit to the re­gion last week.

Mr McGowan said at a com­mu­nity fo­rum in South Hed­land, con­trac­tors from Kar­ratha and Port Hed­land ex­pressed their frus­tra­tion at miss­ing out on mul­ti­ple State Gov­ern­ment pro­ject ten­ders to com­pa­nies in Perth.

“We be­lieve in a com­pet­i­tive process but there needs to be a heav­ier weight­ing on re­gional con­trac­tors and a recog­ni­tion that the buy lo­cal pol­icy needs some tidy­ing up,” he said.

“We did an anal­y­sis on a range of con­tracts across the re­gions and it showed most of the con­tracts were be­ing awarded to Perth com­pa­nies, par­tic­u­larly when it came to on­go­ing main­te­nance con­tracts.”

Mr McGowan said WA La­bor’s Pri­or­ity Start pol­icy would cre­ate jobs in the area, by en­sur­ing all big State Gov­ern­ment con­struc­tion projects work with Pil­bara train­ing providers to de­liver ap­pren­tice­ships and trainee­ships for lo­cals.

“WA La­bor will close loop­holes in the Buy Lo­cal pol­icy so more con­tracts for State Gov­ern­ment projects are awarded to head con­trac­tors based in re­gional WA,” he said.

“We also need to be tak­ing a more ro­bust ap­proach with re­sources com­pa­nies when it comes to hir­ing lo­cal con­trac­tors.

“Lots of com­pa­nies are op­er­at­ing on State Agree­ment Acts, that’s a le­git­i­mate way the gov­ern­ment could be do­ing more to in­flu­ence these com­pa­nies.”

Pic­ture: Court­ney Fowler

Op­po­si­tion Leader Mark McGowan with La­bor Mem­ber for Min­ing and Pas­toral Stephen Daw­son MLClast week.

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