Candidates fire up in bid win Collie-Preston seat
Heated debates got under way at the candidates for Collie-Preston breakfast in Eaton on Wednesday morning, with seven of the eight representatives taking to the lectern to pitch their policies.
The debate was mediated by political commentator Peter Kennedy who said Premier Colin Barnett was “seeking to lead the alliance into a third four-year term,” which no one had ever done in WA.
“Why is it so difficult? One might say it’s a time factor, a lot of voters say you’ve had eight years it’s time to give the other side a go,” he said.
Labor candidate Mick Murray who has held the seat since 2001 said his knowledge of the region “was second to none” and he would focus on creating jobs.
“There are 3000 direct jobs up the hill and people underestimate that and you go through the mines, the power stations and the associated industries and there is probably more,” he said.
“I understand the changes that are needed on that hill and the investment that it is needed to keep that going.”
Greens candidate Gordon Tayler said he wasn’t “the usual politician” but was running for the seat because the absence of a Greens candidate in the South West had been a “detriment” to the environment.
“I am interested in looking at the next 20 to 30 years and what that will mean for Collie-Preston and the new realities which are starting to come in around employment and jobs,” he said.
Nationals candidate for Collie-Preston Monique Warnock pitched the Nationals plan to increase the mining levy, which would help fund a fast train from Bunbury to Perth and committed further investment for the Collie Motorplex.
“We’ll extend the Dampier to Bunbury gas pipeline to Collie – a $50 million investment that puts the Perdaman Urea Plant project back on the table,” she said.
Liberal candidate Elysia Harverson said the Government had already “significantly invested in Collie” and her focus would be on jobs, community safety and families.
“I will be working to ensure we develop innovative new technologies like driverless buses and we need to make sure the Bunbury Outer Ring Road is fully funded,” she said.
Shooter, Fishers and Farmers candidate Clinton Thomas said his focus would be on retaining the young people in the region.
“I can’t see why with the right infrastructure in place we can’t have remote campuses for all West Australian universities,” he said.
Independent Louis Scibilia said the politicians were “talking rubbish” and the “Government was failing”.
“No one cares, that’s why I am here, I am here to help the children of the future and unless we are going to change the way we think we are not going anywhere,” he said.
One Nation candidate David Miller said he was all about “apprentices” and he was not a politician but a construction worker.
“We will not support the sale of Western Power or the sale of any State assets,” he said.
“We’re not promising millions for this and millions for that because there is no money – we’re $40 billion in the red.”
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