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State Electoral Boundaries

Thank you for the opportunity to respond to the proposed changes to the State Electoral  Boundaries.
Whilst it is obvious that change is required and that change takes into account the evolving face of Queensland and its population base, the impending proposal does not  recognise current and historical information across many levels as to how rural and regional demographics work.It is indeed appropriate to base proposed changes to electoral boundaries on greater effectiveness for elected members to represent their constituents.
The Gulf Cattleman's Association believes that the proposed changes fall short across many areas and the impacts that this will bring to regions like the Gulf will be detrimental to fair and equitable representation.
History will quiet clearly show that the Gulf region of Queensland has been strongly represented by the Local Government group of Shires based on Etheridge, Croydon, Carpenteria, Burke, Mornington, and Doomadgee,

The majority of these Shires have a far greater connection to the Cairns / Tableland region thru things such as

  • Transport Corridors/ Savannah Way
  • Business Centres

  • Industry Links / Supply Chain

  • Regional Organisations 

  • Government Agencies
  • Social Engagement 

It is imperative that factors such as the above, govern the the inclusion of the Gulf Shires in the proposed new seat of Hill, recognising that population figures also play a role in determining where the boundaries may lie.
The socio-economic benefits based on existing connectivity across this region are well established, giving some sense of stability and focus and this would be enhanced if political representation was on the same level.
Under the current proposed changes the geographic location of these Shires put them on the extremities of Traeger. This coupled with the size and scale of the electorate would seem to create an unfair bias to not only the electorate but also to the elected member as to their ability to engage and represent equitably and effectively.
The Gulf Cattleman's Association would encourage the proponents of these proposed changes to apply greater due-diligence in regard to regional demographics and regional community dynamics before any further decisions are arrived at.
The Gulf Cattleman's Association strongly believes that the inclusion of the Gulf Shires into the proposed new seat of Hill would deliver far greater effective representation based on all levels of association with the Cairns/Tablelands region rather than the  Mt Isa/ Charters Towers region.

Barry Hughes
President: Gulf Cattleman's Association Inc.