Government failing regions on Regions at the Ready report response
Federal Independent Member for Indi Cathy McGowan says the Coalition Government is well overdue in providing a response to the recommendations made by the report, Regions at the Ready: Investing in Australia’s Future.
“In December, the Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack, responded to my question in Parliament with advice that his National Party colleague and deputy, Minister Bridget McKenzie would co-ordinate a whole-of-government response to the Regions at the Ready report by the end of the year. It is time to see that response,” Ms McGowan said.
The report was tabled in June 2018 by the Select Committee on Regional Development and Decentralisation. It outlines principle-based recommendations including the development by Government of a regional Australia white paper. Ms McGowan was a member of the committee which deliberated these recommendations for a year, hosted 14 public hearings and received almost 200 written submissions.
“It has now been more than six months since this report was finalised and tabled in parliament,” Ms McGowan said.
“Is the government’s tardiness in responding to the report indicative of the importance it places on regional development and decentralisation?
“There is great interest from regional Australia as to how the government, and the National Party in particular, will respond to the recommendations. They are practical, considered and designed to ensure regional Australia continues to prosper. Communities in my electorate want to see the Government’s policy development in areas including regional deals and jobs growth.
“Those who live in our regions have spoken up and their progressive ideas are reflected in this report. The people of rural and regional Australia want to know they have been listened to and this report is taken seriously. The recommendations in the report will lead to good governance across Australia.
“I encourage everyone in regional Australia to read the report, share it with their networks and get in touch with their local member of parliament to prompt the government to respond.”
Read the report and Cathy’s speech in Parliament about the report at www.cathymcgowan.com.au/regional_deals_must_be_considered.