Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk has called on the people of far north Queensland to send Campbell Newman a message at the next election and reject his asset sales agenda.
Visiting Barron Gorge Hydro Power Station with Shadow Treasurer and Member for Mulgrave Curtis Pitt, Ms Palaszczuk said only Labor would ensure publicly-owned assets remained publicly owned.
“Labor’s position is crystal clear. Labor won’t sell Queensland’s electricity assets,” Ms Palaszczuk said.
“We have listened to Queenslanders who have said they don’t want their assets sold, because it simply leads to more job losses and higher electricity prices.
“How many jobs will go in this region if the LNP sells-off our electricity assets? How much harder will it be for families to pay their power bill? How will the Government build schools and roads without the income?
“We also know that whether it’s an outright sale or a lease, Queenslanders will never own these assets again.
“The Treasurer admitted last week that the only way Queenslanders will get these assets back at the end of a 50 or 99 year lease is if they’re willing to buy them back.
“We don’t want our children and their children having to fork out tens of billions of dollars to buy back assets they should already own.”
Ms Palaszczuk said publicly owned land associated with Stanwell could be sold off.
“Barron Gorge is a beautiful part of the far north. The parklands near the power station are actually owned by Stanwell. Will those spaces be sold off as well?
“The LNP refuses to be upfront with Queenslanders about the details of their asset sell-off.”
Mr Pitt said maintaining public ownership of electricity assets was particularly important in Far North Queensland.
“The far north is a beautiful place, but as we all know it’s often hammered by cyclones and extreme weather. That unfortunately means blackouts and major damage to power lines and other infrastructure,” he said.
“Our Ergon workers do a great job rapidly restoring electricity in times of need, and rebuilding vital infrastructure in the weeks and months after major weather events.
“That’s because at the moment, service is the number one priority, not profits. Selling these assets to the private sector will mean profits come first.
“I’m urging all Queenslanders, including those in the far north, to send a message to Campbell Newman at the next election. Queenslanders don’t want their assets sold, because they don’t want more job cuts from the LNP, and they don’t want even higher power prices.”