The handling of the Shoalwater Bay expansion paints a perfect picture of the shambles the Turnbull Government has become.
In just the last fortnight, Government Ministers and MPs have given four completely different positions on whether compulsory land acquisitions will proceed for the expansion.
On 18 January, in an interview with Rockhampton's WIN News, Capricornia LNP MP Michelle Landry said she believed that compulsory land acquisitions will go ahead, no matter what locals think.
On 23 January, Defence Minister, Marise Payne clearly left acquisitions on the table: http://www.themorningbulletin.com.au/news/defence-issued-new-orders-over-shoalwater-land-acq/3134774/
This morning, Northern Australia Minister, Senator Matt Canavan also said compulsory acquisitions were needed:
“"We did this in Cultana, a training facility in South Australia a couple of years ago, we compulsorily acquired land there and it was difficult for those people, but they did that for their purposes, the Australian military. We need to do that in Queensland as well.”
But hours later, on ABC Radio Brisbane, Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce said “at this point in time, there is no intention for compulsory acquisitions” planned for the expansion of the Shoalwater Bay.
What the hell is going on? Aren’t these people part of the same government? No wonder local landowners and businesses are confused.
The handling of this expansion has been a stuff up from start to finish by this hopeless Government. In the end, it’s the people of Central Queensland that suffer.
A decent local MP would get straight answers for their constituents. Sadly, they’ve got Michelle Landry instead.
It’s about time that the Prime Minister stepped in and got his Ministers into line, to avoid further stress for affected locals.
The people of Marlborough deserve to hear answers, not hear the Government running around like headless chooks.