Bowen Independent: Senator’s goal is to tune in

 In Election, farming, General, infrastructure, Parliament, People, rural

28 August 2019.

BUILDING jobs and providing regional infrastructure were the main discussion points for a new Queensland Senator on a visit to Bowen on Saturday.

Recently-elected Liberal senator Gerard Rennick’s visit was part of a statewide tour to listen to residents.

The senator talked to local leaders and heard about regional issues.

Born and raised in Chinchilla, where his dad was a farmer and his mum a midwife, Senator Rennick said he was passionate about the regions outside the major cities.

“The bush provides a lot of the money to the southeast, and we need to remember that,” he said.

“If we focus on increasing the regions, that’s going to help the major cities too.”

Senator Rennick said he had heard about multiple issues and projects that interested him on his visit.

“The superyachts at the marina is a project I heard about that I would like to know more about in the future,” he said.

Senator Rennick said that he was also very interested in the Urannah Water Scheme project.

“There are two major streams I want to focus on — that is improving the delivery of major services like power and water,” he said.

“The other is to provide jobs to the regions. With the addition of the hydro-electric power plant in the Urannah Scheme, it looks good on all fronts. To give context, I have a background in finance and I was impressed at the numbers I was seeing.”

Senator Rennick also said that Bowen, and the state, were over “draconian” governing. He called planned changes to Reef laws as an example of “over-regulation” by governance.

“I’m hearing from people that everything is just too overregulated.”

“Farmers having to keep records of fertilisers or when they change crops is an example.

“Fishers are another one seeing dramatic changes to regulations. People are over it.”

Senator Rennick said it was important to keep a strong focus on tourism in the Whitsundays region.

“We’re scaring people off by telling them Great Barrier Reef is dying.

“We want them to be encouraged to come and see it themselves,” he said.

“People like Dr Peter Ridd are proving that it’s not dying and is quite healthy.”

By Jordan Gilliland.

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