Left in dark on power pric­ing

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - DOMANII CAMERON domanii. cameron@ news. com. au

MIN­IS­TER as­sist­ing the Premier on North Queens­land Co­ralee O’Rourke could not con­firm when elec­tric­ity prices would sta­bilise in North Queens­land at last night’s State Gov­ern­ment Es­ti­mates hear­ing.

Hinch­in­brook MP An­drew Cripps asked Ms O’Rourke how the State Gov­ern­ment’s $ 386 mil­lion Powering North Queens­land plan would sta­bilise prices and when it would oc­cur. But Ms O’Rourke could not pro­vide a spe­cific date.

“En­ergy is an is­sue that gets raised with me on a weekly ba­sis,” she said.

“It is a con­cern that North Queens­lan­ders do have, ( we are) mak­ing sure we pro­vide an af­ford­able and se­cure and clean en­ergy fu­ture.”

Ms O’Rourke said as a re­sult of the Powering NQ plan, “Queens­land had the low­est 2018 for­ward whole­sale prices in the coun­try”.

“What we’re say­ing is we need lead­er­ship from the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment to pro­vide stability,” she said.

Mr Cripps asked again whether a date for the sta­bil­i­sa­tion of prices could be pro­vided but Ms O’Rourke could not con­firm.

Mr Cripps also asked Ms O ’ R o u r k e about the re­gion’s crime lev­els, in­clud­ing what the Stronger C o m m u n i - ties group had achieved. Ms O’Rourke said the re­gion had ex­pe­ri­enced a “drop” in crime from Oc­to­ber 2016 to May 2017.

“Of­fences against a per­son have re­duced by 4 per cent,” she said. “Other of­fences which in­cor­po­rate drug and traf­fic of­fences is a re­duc­tion of 11 per cent.”

How­ever, when Mr Cripps asked what the re­sult of the stock­take of each depart­ment and agency in­volved in the Stronger Com­mu­ni­ties was and whether the re­sults were pub­licly avail­able, Ms O’Rourke had to take the question on no­tice.

Ms O’Rourke could also not an­swer Mr Cripps’ question re­gard­ing “what fur­ther ac­tions were de­cided upon with rel­e­vant di­rec­tors- gen­eral and min­is­ters in­volved in Stronger Com­mu­ni­ties ini­tia­tives”, what time frames were set and whether the ac­tions had been com­pleted within those nom­i­nated time frames.

Ms O’Rourke also ad­mit­ted to hav­ing once used her pri­vate email ac­count for min­is­te­rial work af­ter Mudgeer­aba MP Ros Bates asked her. Co­ralee O'Rourke

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