‘Homework’ for leaders ahead of Cairns Cabinet meeting

 

CONVOY delegates have a stack of homework to sort out over the coming weeks after Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced her full Cabinet would meet in Cairns in April.

The pre-budget meeting will come at a critical time for the 50-odd business leaders who set up shop over two days in Parliament House in Brisbane on a quickfire lobby mission to get Cairns its fair share.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk with the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Canberra at Parliament House in Brisbane. PICTURE: ROMY BULLERJAHN / ROMYU PHOTOGRAPHY
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk with the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Canberra at Parliament House in Brisbane. PICTURE: ROMY BULLERJAHN / ROMYU PHOTOGRAPHY

Ms Palaszczuk said she planned to return the favour - and she had some errands for the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Canberra to carry out in the meantime.

"I don't want this to be a meeting where we come up with our Cabinet, we have a reception, and that's it," she said.

"What I want you to do is work out which ministers you want to meet with … and what you want to show them.

"What do you want to show them in your community that's going to make a difference?

"I don't think that sort of engagement has happened previously, but that's front and centre of what I want to do."

Advance Cairns executive chairman Nick Trompf said the Premier would be mad to come to Cairns just before the budget without some serious funding announcements up her sleeve.

"If Cabinet comes to town, they're almost compelled to come and make some commitments to the region," he said.

"They're not going to Cairns a week or two before the budget and sit mute."

Members of the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Capital Q line up in a show of orange force on the steps of Parliament House in Brisbane. PICTURE: ROMY BULLERJAHN / ROMY PHOTOGRAPHY
Members of the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Capital Q line up in a show of orange force on the steps of Parliament House in Brisbane. PICTURE: ROMY BULLERJAHN / ROMY PHOTOGRAPHY

Planning must now get under way to organise trips for Labor ministers to see exactly what the convoy has been rabbiting on about for these past two days.

Visits to the proposed site of the Cairns University Hospital, a first-hand view of the expansion potential at HMAS Cairns, and land earmarked for a new aviation excellence precinct at the Cairns Airport will all make the itinerary.

Ms Palaszczuk praised the convoy for its organisation.

"Can I say, if all the regions would do this I would be a very very happy Premier," she said.

"The fact that you have narrowed it down to your key asks from government makes my job easier.

"Now, I think before we hand down a budget, we need to be on the ground and see what it means for your community "

 

Cairns Airport aviation chief commercial officer Luis Perez, Barbara Ford from Air Freight Handling Services and the rest of the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Capital Q's transport and roads group talks with Transport Minister Mark Bailey and Barron River MP Craig Crawford at Parliament House in Brisbane. PICTURE: ROMY BULLERJAHN / ROMY PHOTOGRAPHY
Cairns Airport aviation chief commercial officer Luis Perez, Barbara Ford from Air Freight Handling Services and the rest of the Cairns TNQ Convoy to Capital Q's transport and roads group talks with Transport Minister Mark Bailey and Barron River MP Craig Crawford at Parliament House in Brisbane. PICTURE: ROMY BULLERJAHN / ROMY PHOTOGRAPHY

 

MEETING IN APRIL

 

THE exact date for the Cabinet meeting has not been set, but it will be in April. It will bring all the Palaszczuk Government's ministers to the Far North, as well as a considerable retinue of staffers and bureaucrats.