Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
The Honourable Jeff Seeney
Communities have their say on new Gasfields Commission
Queenslanders have spoken strongly on the membership and powers of the new GasFields Commission, Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said today.
Mr Seeney thanked the community for helping shape the new body which would manage the co-existence between rural landholders, regional communities and the coal seam gas industry.
“There is a very keen interest in the community about the role of the Commission in achieving the sustainable development of Queensland’s CSG industry,” he said.
“Expressions of interest from suitably qualified Queenslanders to serve as Commissioners and submissions on the function and powers of the GasFields Commission closed on Friday.
“We received more than 80 expressions of interest from individuals interested in being Commissioners and a further 55 submissions on the proposed powers and functions of the Commission.”
Mr Seeney said nominations for up to six Com missioner positions would be assessed and considered by a Cabinet sub-committee with appointments then approved by the Governor-in-Council.
“The Cabinet sub-committee will consist of me as Deputy Premier, Minister for Natural Resources and Mines Andrew Cripps; Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry John McVeigh and Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection Andrew Powell,” he said.
“I expect the selection process will be finalised through the Cabinet sub committee within the next month and I hope to be able to announce the full Commission membership once the Commission is operational.
“My department will also carefully review the submissions received about powers and functions in consultation with Chairman John Cotter to ensure community views are taken into account in the drafting of legislation where appropriate.”
GasFields Commission Chairman John Cotter said he was pleased with the enthusiastic response from applicants keen to be a part of the Commission.
“I am confident the selection process for Commissioners will deliver a balanced mix of skilled people with community, landholder, technical and industry expertise,” Mr Cotter said.
“I have also interacted with a wide range of groups and individuals over the past month to discuss their views on the role of the Commission in improving co-existence between landholders, regional communities and the coal seam gas industry here in Queensland.
“One of the key roles for the Commission will be ensuring regional landholders and rural communities have a strong voice on issues related to the CSG industry.”
The establishment of the GasFields Commission is a key initiative of the LNP’s 100 day plan of action.