Farm workers are desperately needed for Queensland farms, according to State Member for Mirani, Stephen Andrew. Thousands of jobs are available for unemployed Australians in regional Queensland and other parts of the country currently experiencing an acute labour shortage brought on by closed borders.
One Nation leader Senator Pauline Hanson joined local growers in Ayr this week where farmers were at a loss to what more they could do to encourage Australians to move to regional farming areas.
“Border closures have reduced the availability of overseas workers and this has opened enormous job opportunities for unemployed Australians,” Senator Hanson said. “In Queensland, it’s been estimated there will be a shortage this year of about 9000 workers in agricultural industries alone. Many farmers are concerned their produce will go to waste because there are not enough people to pick, pack and process it. Before the pandemic, a lot of seasonal agricultural jobs in Australia were usually taken by backpackers or workers brought to Australia under programs like the Pacific Labour Scheme. The industry has relied strongly on this imported labour despite there being hundreds of thousands of unemployed Australians perfectly capable of doing the work.”

Assistance for farm workers to relocate

Relocation costs are no longer a barrier to Australians seeking these jobs because state and Federal governments now have financial support in place to help unemployed people meet these expenses.
“The Queensland Government provides up to $1500 in assistance for eligible people relocating for agricultural work like picking fruit, and the Australian Government provides up to $6000 in assistance for eligible people relocating to a regional area for work. That’s a lot of support,” Senator Hanson said.
“There are advantages in living and working in regional areas, such as lower accommodation costs and house prices. They haven’t experienced pandemic lockdowns as often as our cities have. When people are concerned about housing affordability, how can beat buying a house in Ayr for less than $200,000 and be guaranteed work all year round?”
Senator Hanson said governments needed to examine more ways to get unemployed Australians into Australian jobs instead of importing labour.
“There’s been some uptake of these relocation incentives, but they’re not meeting all of the demand for seasonal agricultural workers,” she said. “It’s about time Channel Seven rethink next years filming of farmer wants a wife and consider a new program called “Farmer Wants a Worker”. Governments need to examine why these programs are not as effective as they could be, and start getting tough on lazy, long term unemployed Australians who think welfare can be treated as a lifestyle.
“Farmers are paying top dollar for workers, so they deserve to see productivity. If the carrot approach is not working, some form of stick approach should also be considered. It makes no sense to spend taxpayer dollars on importing overseas workers to meet a labour shortage while paying unemployment benefits to Australians capable of doing the work.”

IT’S the secret tax the major parties don’t want to talk about – a system for draining money out of every citizen that can be easily supercharged to raise a trillion dollars at the flick of a switch. Both the LNP and Labor plan to introduce a Road Tax, run by a third party private consortium with management rights over the country’s road network. The trials are already well advanced and well documented but no one is saying anything about it because the major parties need something like this road tax to pay for their spending and the debt they have racked up.

Every car, truck, and bus will be fitted with a smart meter, telling the government everywhere you go and when you go there. The privacy implications alone are staggering but just as concerning is the potential for the resulting tax to be set at any level. Like the GST, this tax will be felt by everyone in the country. And just as we were told the GST would replace other taxes, we will be told the road tax will replace fuel excise and registration. Where it differs is the rate of tax can be raised to any level with just a few keystrokes and without having to get approval from the states. We might as well hand our bank account passwords to the government so they can help themselves to whatever they want.

The major parties are committed to the Road Tax because it will solve a number of problems for the government. Electric cars don’t use fuel so the government will miss out on billions of dollars in fuel excise as the government forces petrol cars off the road. Fitting them with smart meters, like e-Tags, will capture those dollars by another means and both the major parties are planning for electric cars to become the only means of transport.

The “proof of concept” trials are finished, telemetric devices have been procured, and a private ‘road-managing’ corporation engaged to run the Federal Government’s on-road Road Charging Trial throughout 2020, ending in January next year. Government bureaucrats hope to forestall any public resistance with a ‘staged’ introduction, starting with trucks and heavy vehicles, which will then be gradually expanded until every vehicle on the road is covered by the new policy.

The road tax is particularly dangerous for regional drivers, who sometimes have to drive many kilometres on State roads just to get to their neighbour’s house. The government’s new Road Tax system would force people to have a “smart meter” device or e-Tag installed in their cars. The device would send monthly readings to a private consortium, like Transurban, with rights to charge drivers for their usage of State roads. The third party “service provider” would charge drivers based on how many kilometres they had driven, which roads they had driven on, and what time of day or night it was when they did.

A road tax or ‘road-user pricing system’ has been sold to Labor and LNP as the perfect green measure with huge behaviour change advantages in reducing car usage and allowing governments to further many other broader policy objectives. It’s all part of the major parties’ plan to phase out fossil-fuelled cars completely by 2040, or even 2035 and forcing higher taxes onto fossil-fuel cars is a key mechanism being used in Norway to force people into EVs. They want everybody in electric vehicles as soon as possible, despite the fact that EVs have a much shorter driving range, require a lot more servicing and take forever to recharge. So long, in fact, that they have been known to cause grid failures and blackouts in areas where more than three or four are trying to recharge at the same time, although no-one in the media or government will tell you about that.

Background information

Both the major parties are likely to claim the Secret Road Tax is fake news so here’s some of the background information where you can confirm for yourself that this is very real and coming to a set of wheels near you:

The Inaugural Road Pricing Forum – Open Discussion surrounding the movement towards road pricing reform in major Australian Cities – to be held in 2021


Federal Government Heavy Vehicle Trial Program 2020-21 – to be run in two staged trials with second one ending in January 2021

Program Flyer states: “Government has co-designed the trials with industry to inform and shape future policy” explaining that the “National Pilot will report road use data and receive mock invoices comparing their current heavy vehicle registration and fuel charges against alternative charging scenarios”.

Flyer for Second Stage also gives goals as collecting “distance, mass (weight) and location data from vehicles’ telematics (distance recording) devices” and generate mock invoices.

Government website for the program

Federal Government’s 2019 Infrastructure Audit – Report from Infrastructure Australia

Report states that “the transport sector risks becoming financially and environmentally unsustainable” (5.1 p. 266) and that ”the problem of cost recovery has been exacerbated by a growing disparity between increasing traffic and the decreasing return of funds to governments from fuel excise due to improved vehicle efficiency” .

It also notes that road use has increased, “while excise revenue has decreased by 20%.” (5.1 p. 266).

The Report refers to “strong support for user pays mechanisms for infrastructure” (p266) and discusses potential mechanisms for ‘behaviour change’ saying that “ We also need to look at the potential for emerging third-party revenue streams” and use of  “Telematics and vehicle tracking (to) help with scheduling and improved data collection and planning”.

Section 5.2 looks at how “Costs of road congestion and public transport crowding are forecasted to double from 2016 to 2031” and that current model is unsustainable.

Infrastructure Australia (Federal Government Agency under  – 2018 – Government Policy Document on Infrastructure Pricing Reform

Whole document is about “road reform” and includes a recommendation for “road user charges” to be introduced, for which IA says “there is broad agreement on the need for road infrastructure reform to drive productivity

Parliamentary Inquiry into Road User charges – 2017-2018

Policy Position papers of all stakeholders are unanimously in favour of road user chargers, even ag bodies – see whole list at link below

Selected Policy papers on road pricing from Stakeholder groups

Australian Automobile Association Policy Position Paper supports road user pricing

Business Council of Australia Policy Position paper on road user charges – August 2017

The framework for the independent price regulation for heavy vehicle charges should be designed so that it can eventually be expanded to all vehicles on Australian roads

Grain Growers Policy Position Paper on road user charges

Grain Growers support road use charges on heavy vehicles being expanded to include all road users:

The introduction of independent price regulation for road use by heavy vehicles is an important first step in establishing a full direct road user charging system

National Farmers Federation policy on road user charges – Given in Submission letter July 2017

Supports expansion of heavy vehicle user pays saying:

The NFF considers the introduction of independent price regulation for road use by heavy vehicles as an important first step in establishing a direct road user charging system.”


Productivity Commissioner Report

The Case for Infrastructure Pricing Reform – What water can teach roads

(PDF coming – to be uploaded soon)


Victorian State Government

Policy Document on “How an efficient, fair and sustainable pricing regime can help tackle congestion

Victorian Government has hundreds of papers on road pricing.  Most recent I could find was a 2020 “Cost Benefit Analysis on Road Pricing

NSW State Government – Productivity Commissioner -2020

Continuing the: Productivity Conversation Green Paper

‘Green Paper’ on Road Reform for NSW State Government which arguing for introduction of a pricing model based on Singapore’s Electronic Road Pricing (ERP) scheme

Australian Rail Association

Why Road Pricing is Vital to Australia’s Economic Prosperity

Financial Services Sector -THE BIG FOUR

KPMG – 2019 Research Paper for the South Australian Government recommending Road User Scheme be introduced

Deloittes and Infrastructure Partnerships Australia – Discussion Paper on Road Pricing Mechanisms – prepared with support from:

Australia’s leading motoring clubs, the Australian Automobile Association (AAA), the National Roads & Motorists’ Association (NRMA), the Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ), and the Royal Automobile Club of Victoria (RACV)

Whole document is on various road user charging models which they recommend be introduced.

Price Waterhouse Coopers Report recommends third party management and road user charging

Technology Journal Article

News Media – “Rise of the Machines” – A Snapshot of the World in 2038

Transurban Research Paper on Road Charges using Melbourne Roads as the model at

Contains following blurb “Transurban is a vocal advocate for road-funding reform. We believe that Australia’s current system of opaque fees and charges and rapidly diminishing fuel excise should be replaced with a transparent charging system that is built on the principle that those who benefit, pay, while ensuring fairness across the community”.

International Bodies

OECD Document exploring what the social impacts will be on people when Road Pricing has been introduced

US Government 2019 White Paper on” Lessons Learned for Designing Programs to Charge for Road Use, Congestion, and Emissions”

UN Infrastructure –

FOI and RTI Documents  – Documents released under Disclosure Log 2020

Email correspondence and Departmental Reports – Qld Main Roads and Infrastructure Priority – 2019

Vehicle operating cost estimation approach (ref to VLC approach)

RTI-1003 – Released 5 March 2020

RTI-1091 – Released 29 April 2020

RTI-1135 – Released 19 May 2020

Sets of emails and meeting minutes where policy offices discuss various issues to do with road reform between Queensland Main Roads and Federal body, Infrastructure Australia – discussions on driver behaviour, and how to use “taxation policy” to increase EV take-up.

In Doc 5 they worry that the increases in “fuel efficiency” could adversely effect driver behaviour by making people drive more.

Comments in the documents – doc 8 – talks about how the Department has to have long range targets “to give industry time to prepare”.

Download the emissions meeting pdf here.

Emails recommending other opportunities for Australia’s transport ministers to achieve the objectives of our Inter-Governmental Agreement, that is, by identifying reforms to improve land transport productivity, safety, environmental performance and regulatory efficiency

The NTC’s Work Program contains proposals for new reforms, approved reform projects, improvements to land transport laws, activities to monitor, review and evaluate the implementation of previously-approved reforms, and highly analytical work on heavy vehicle road user charges. (p7)

Land transport: future challenges

  1. 21 on Heavy vehicle pricing

Heavy vehicle charges are set to recover the costs that heavy vehicles impose on the road network. These costs include road construction, maintenance and operations. Under the existing pay-as-you-go (PAYGO) system, these costs have been measured using a retrospective approach, based on seven years of historical data. That is, heavy vehicle charges are set to recover the reported historical expenditure of building, maintaining and operating the road network. Other network infrastructure (for example electricity, water, telecommunications) typically uses a ‘life-cycle’ approach based on ‘forward looking costs’ to measure the costs of investments and operations. Under this model, capital costs are recovered over the time in which assets are used and consumed.




ALMOST a million Australians are unemployed but the Queensland government can’t rouse itself to fast-track approving the only potential large-scale job creation in Australia: new Queensland mines. Official June figures, released today, show the highest jobless percentage (7.4 per cent) since recorded statistics began In 1998. The 992,000 people now unemployed was an increase of 69,000 on figures for May.

Now is the time to KickStart the Queensland economy by taking advantage of our best performing industries. Any government that refuses to fast-track large-scale jobs, in the worst recession in a century, is just suicidal. By refusing to extend coal-mining in Queensland, the Labor government is effectively throwing extra hundreds of miners onto the dole.

Several Central and North Queensland coal mines are not at peak production.  And still, whenever they have to sign the last authorisation for more coal mines, paralysis sets in. Their hands shake, and they just can’t bring themselves to do it.

The State Department has confirmed there are six coal mine applications, most listed for several years, scheduled to employ as many as 10,000 people. That kind of large scale job creation is exactly what we need and we are very fortunate, in Queensland, to have the means to do it. This is urgent. The government has to authorise these new mines. And it has to do it soon.

The Isaac Regional Council is taking final submissions on its new planning scheme (submissions close on 20 July 2020). As the State Member for Mirani, I am making the below submission and I publish it here so you can see what my feedback on the scheme and, if you wish, you can copy and paste (make any edits you wish) and make a submission yourself. They just need to be emailed to by 5pm on Monday, 20 July 2020.

Office of the Mayor

Isaac Regional Council

PO Box 94



Dear Cr Baker,




What is being proposed by the Council amounts to little more than a policy of “planned retreat” that will ultimately see the relocation of human habitation out of coastal, rural and forest areas and into sustainable, affordable, communal, urban ‘live where you work’ hubs that virtually every Environmental Minister since 1990 has advocated and legislated for in this State.

No shacks on the beach, no sole occupancy detached dwellings, no family homes, no backyards, no pets and definitely no living in the hills or bush or by a stream in your old age.  Just communal living in low rise unit developments everywhere, with as small a ‘human footprint’ as they can get away with forcing on us.

The proposed changes to Planning contained in the new scheme are part and parcel of an ongoing program of transformative and radical change through the use of stealth and incrementalism.  A program that is being carried out in Australia at a Federal, State and Local level.  It relies on the strategic presumption that small changes brought in gradually will not provoke community protest action or media attention until it is too late.

The introduction of four new hazard zone mapping overlays for coast, fire, dust and flood will have a devastating impact on the Isaac Region’s economy and its capacity for future growth.  For landholders, the adverse impacts will be many, ranging from growing restrictions on access and uses of land in the region, to other issues around insurance and legal liability, increased costs and an overall reduction in property and resale value.

These mapping overlays have been shown to be excessively broad in their zoning designations and through Public consultation meetings at Clairview, Stephen Andrew State Member for Mirani was informed by the presenting Cardno Engineers the mapping overlays were in error by 48% (They were only half right).

The Member also requested information at that meeting, concerning what an increased compliment of renewables/reduction of current emissions would have on the predictive water rises and was afforded no answers..

So renewable implementation has not been taken into consideration, why not?  Greenhous Gas emissions are supposed to be central to Climate Change temperatures and therefore directly related to Sea Level Rise predictions, which suggests these predictions are built on fiction, not hard facts.

Under these overlays, and Government’s propensity for expanding their boundaries, almost every property in the Region will ultimately be at risk of inclusion in the new Hazard zones.  This means every resident of the Isaac Region should be concerned with the direction this scheme is going in.  At this rate, we are going to see a complete lockdown of the bush and coast, with many areas highly regulated and taxed, and others completely restricted and off limits.

The new Scheme is neither proportionate or democratic in response to the various inflated ‘climate change’ risk assessments contained in the mapping overlays.

In fact, the erosion of Farmers’ Property Rights as a result of the State’s Vegetation Management laws will look like ‘child’s play’ compared to what will happen should these draconian changes be passed.

Common law ‘property rights’ as we and our forefathers understood them will be rendered meaningless.  At this rate, owning a property will become so loaded down with restrictions and additional costs that there will be no incentive or reason to own property anymore.

The whole idea of a democracy is that you elect representatives who will follow the public’s lead on what is right for the country and their region, but this isn’t what we’re seeing in Queensland anymore.  In the case of this new Planning Scheme, the people of Isaac Region are no longer telling their public officials what they want or need done, they are being told  what their public officials want done and how.  All to further a collectivist Green Agenda, bent on revolutionising land access, use and management in Queensland, whether Queenslanders like it or not.

I ask that the Council scrap the proposed changes to the Isaac Regional Council Planning laws for the good of the community and the State.

Yours faithfully,

Mr Stephen Andrew

Member for Mirani


THE Great Barrier Reef narrative desperately needs a reality check to give taxpayers and tourist workers a fair deal. Dodgy science and fake news on the reef were costing taxpayers and tourism operators billions of dollars for the sake of perpetuating an ideological myth.

The reef has been used as a weapon in the extremists’ war against capitalism, democracy and the Australian way of life. They say truth is the first casualty of war and that certainly seems to be the case as highly dubious evidence has been used to attack farmers, industry, and everything socialists hate. That narrative – that mining and farmers have killed the reef – is translating to fewer visitors from interstate and overseas.

I met with leading reef expert, Dr Peter Ridd, in Mackay to discuss what was needed for the future of the reef and North Queensland. Dr Ridd identified two key things we needed to change regarding the reef.

“We need to get the science evidence checked and we need to start telling the people in the south-east corner (of Queensland) that not everything that you’ve heard about the state of the reef is true,” he said. “We’re spending a whole lot of money supposedly on the basis that the reef is badly damaged when all the evidence would seem to indicate that it’s not. I’m just asking for a little bit of money just to check some of that science and also to get the message out to the people in the south-east that in fact the reef is in really good shape. There’s all these people down there who think it’s completely damaged when it’s not. It’s in way better condition (than that), probably in excellent condition.”

Both Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk have rejected my call to withdraw the billions of taxpayer dollars being used to fight an ideological war against farmers. Both major parties at both levels of government are throwing money at the reef and in the war against farmers because they think it will win votes in the capital cities. But those billions of dollars won’t make any real difference to the reef. They will just send farmers and regional Queensland broke.

At a time when we need to get our economy going again, the last thing we want to see is taxpayer money being used to kill off our most productive industries in mining and agriculture.

NORTH Queenslanders will be very sceptical when asked to provide input on naming a bridge over the Pioneer River. The Department of Transport and Main Roads had started a “Community Consultation Process for the naming of structures on the Mackay Ring Road project”. When the Queensland Government consults the people before naming four bridges on the Mackay Ring Road, the public has two questions:

  1. Is Bridgey McBridgeface  a valid suggestion
  2. Has the outcome already been decided?

The public could be forgiven for being sceptical about how far their suggestions will go and doubting the ideas will make it any further than the wastepaper basket. It was the Queensland Labor government that insisted the name of the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital name had to be changed at a cost of $500,000, arguing that it would attract more funding. Except after the name change, millionaire philanthropists Judith and Trevor St Baker vowed to avoid funding the hospital in the future and hospital donations went down by hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The real scandal was the rigged poll Labor ran around the name change, where just 74 IP addresses voted Yes in the poll nearly 18,000 times. Just 24 IP addresses voted more than 10,500 times.  A large number of the IP addresses were identified as being used by Queensland government entities including Ministerial Services and Queensland Health.

The Crime and Corruption Commission later released a damning statement on the public poll but decided not to launch a full corruption investigation due to the cost and problematic data.

The Queensland government will have to provide greater guarantees around transparency before the public will take them seriously. I welcome the locals having a say in what the bridges are called but I don’t welcome the Brisbane Bureaucrats having not just a say but the final say – especially if they make the decision before the public is even asked.

Submissions can be made at and Mr Andrew encouraged locals to have their say through

NORTH and Central Queenslanders with kids who love sport should ensure they don’t miss out on funding opportunities through the Queensland government. A new round is now open for Fair Play vouchers, which offers $150 vouchers for sports-related costs.

Anyone who holds a Health Care Card or Pensioner Concession Card and has a child aged five to 17 should check their eligibility for the vouchers. A lot of parents who have lost work due to COVID-19 may not realise that if they are currently receiving JobSeeker payments, they are eligible for a Health Care Card and the Fair Play voucher. As restrictions lift across Queensland, our attention turns to sport and the financial situation for many families will be strained by this added cost. It is important that every family in Central and North Queensland that is eligible for the vouchers applies now.

The vouchers can be used to pay costs associated with sport and active recreation memberships, registrations, and participation fees.

For more information, visit:

LOCAL shows are in danger of permanently disappearing without properly targeted support. I have asked Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, to match Federal Government support for show societies but to target the support in a way that will bring shows back into regional Queensland. The Federal Government has committed $36 million to support agricultural show societies’ recovery from pandemic-enforced shutdowns.

We want to see an equivalent commitment from the State Government because these shows are an integral part of our regional communities and we can’t afford to lose annual ritual. But it can’t be just a matter of committing funds. The money needs to be targeted in a way that will get results.

After consulting with stakeholders, it became clear that a more targeted approach would be necessary before shows could be held. Keeping the local entities alive to look after the grounds and stage the show is just part of the equation. Even if showgrounds were allowed to host such events later this year, there probably wouldn’t be any shows as we know them. The rides, sideshow alley, food vendors, showbags, and all the stalls that we normally associate with a visit to the show are unlikely to be in a position to simply restart their life. Many members of the Showmen’s Guild and the travellers that follow the show circuit have slipped the gaps of government support and have been financially crippled by the pandemic that shut down their business.

I put a proposal to the Queensland Government this week to target their matched funding to getting the show circuit moving again. I have asked the Premier to consider underwriting the restart of the show circuit because these travelling businesses are a vital part of the show and they simply don’t have the means to get their businesses up and running again. Once they get moving on the circuit again, they will be generating turnover, rebuilding their business and boosting regional economies as well as boosting spirits. While it is likely numbers will initially be down on show attendances prior to the pandemic but we can’t afford to have communities get used to not having a show.

It would be a terrible loss of tradition and social cohesiveness. Everyone in the great State of Queensland has a connection to ‘the show’ and the smaller the community’s population, the stronger that connection will be. I think restoring the ‘local show’ for people that have been through so much will be a welcome relief and a return to normal life. In addition, the local shows have always been a great contributor to the regional economies and we are in desperate need of getting our wealth-producing regions booming again.

The General Manager of the Queensland Chamber of Agricultural Societies, Trevor Beckingham, has called on Members of Parliament to push for funding from the State Government. I’m happy to do that but I also want to make sure we get the right outcomes. It would be a terrible shame if taxpayer money was spent to keep the shows running and we didn’t get that outcome. I understand some of the businesses that travel the show circuit have invested enormous sums of money in stock that they now have to pay to keep in storage. The feedback I am receiving is that even if shows were scheduled for later in the year, those key elements of the show could not afford to attend.

The combination of funds to the local venues (from the Federal Government) and funds for the travelers (from the State Government) will help compensate for what will no doubt be lower-than-normal numbers at local shows when they are able to return.

BOTH sides of politics are blaming farmers for perceived damage to the reef in a bid to win over metropolitan votes. While Queensland Labor is being blamed for spending taxpayer money to demonise farmers through the Reef 2050 Water Quality program, the attacks are being funding by the LNP at the Federal level. Both parties and both governments should hang their heads in shame for the way they are treating farmers and I call on them both to withdraw taxpayer funding from the program and use it to support industries that keep taxpayers employed.

These political parties can’t just place all the blame on farmers without considering the impact our urban population has on water quality. I would go up the Pioneer River, where the fresh is, and drink water out of the river any day but I don’t think the Premier (Annastacia Palaszczuk) would do the same in the Brisbane River any time soon.

The Pioneer River is surrounded by sugar cane farms from top to bottom but Mackay still has the second best drinking water in the world.  For the Reef 2050 funds to be spent on demonising farmers and driving them out of business instead of actually making a difference on the reef is a travesty. The LNP in Queensland likes to pretend they are the friend of the farmers but they never let on that their Federal counterparts are funding this lunacy.

I wrote to the Prime Minister about this issue and asked for taxpayer funds to be withdrawn from the program. The Prime Minister, in his reply, pointed out some of the positive support being offered to farmers to voluntarily change their practices, but he doesn’t’ mention what happens with the millions of dollars in untied funding gifted to the water quality program. The truth is the whole program, including the disastrous measures being implemented by the State, are funded by both the major parties.


KickStart – Reef 2050

Mount Morgan residents face a long wait before the Burnett Highway fully reopens. The highway at the entrance to Mount Morgan has been partially closed since heavy rain caused a rockslide in March this year, leading to long delays and plenty of frustration. It’s incredibly disappointing it has already been two months without anything happening to fix the problem. If this was a partial closure of George Street in Brisbane, it would have been fixed long ago.
The Department of Transport and Main Roads has at least confirmed a survey and detailed design for the repair work has now been completed. The department is now looking for a contractor to carry out the works, which is encouraging. However, while construction work will commence by July, it is not expected to be completed until late this year.
I have previously written to the Minister requesting an urgent fix for this problem, given the impact on locals and local industry. This is a key highway for a number of industries and the extended time delays is a major inconvenience for locals making trips into Rockhampton.
The boulder (about the size of a small car) that came to rest beside the road has been removed and technical experts have inspected the site. As a result of the inspection, the department imposed a single lane restriction with a reduced speed limit. At this stage, those restrictions will remain in place until the work is completed. TMR has rejected a proposed widening of the highway at the site to allow two-way traffic on the basis of cost and the time it would take to build.

I continue to advocate for urgency on a full opening of the highway. It’s not just slowing down trucks and buses going about their business but it’s slowing down everyday life and worker commutes. Workers are finding themselves sitting in the dark early in the morning, with no traffic around, waiting for a traffic light to change.