The new LNP leader Campbell Newman has revealed he understands the fly- in, fly-out (FIFO) culture Moura is fighting against because he used to be one of them.
The previous Lord Mayor of Brisbane told local media he was a mining consultant at Moura’s Dawson Mine for seven months in 1994, with a home base in Brisbane.
“I lived in town next to the fire station,” Mr Newman told Central Telegraph.
He understands the life of a FIFO worker, having eaten at the single person’s camp, staying in a company duplex and exploring the nightlife.
“I used to go to the Coal and Cattle (Hotel) On Thursday nights,” he said.
Newman said he is concerned about the increasing trend for FIFO contracts by mining giants.
“It’s been made uneconomic to invest in building our regions.
“We need to give them a framework and incentive to invest.”
Last month more than 350 people from across Queensland’s Bowen Basin turned out to a rally to protest against the increasing numbers of fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) workers in the mining industry.
The protest, organised by the Moranbah Action Group, is arguing against 100 per cent FIFO workforces being pushed by major mining companies.
Newman said he could not provide detail about his plans to see more invested into places like Moura after he declared all the LNP’s policies null and void.
He said he wants to review all policies, but expects a lot of it to remain the same.
“It’s no reflection on the policy work that’s been done,” Mr Newman said.
He is in favour of royalties for regions and a return of funding to local communities.
“They see coal trains going over the horizon with the wealth, but its not coming back.”
The issue of FIFO work has attracted plenty of debate over the years, with many believing the work detracts from local communities and negatively impacts on workers.
Others believe FIFO work is prone to a stereotype and many major companies believe it should only be used in conjunction with other contract types.
The latest policy review has on the coal seam gas (CSG) industry from March this year has been discarded only one week after it was released, Newman said he was concerned about the impact CSG could have on good farming land.
“It needs to be done in a co-operative way without making it hard to work a paddock with a tractor for example.”
Newman also ran the state’s grain handling in 2000-01, including the Biola and Moura silo’s, which he says is further proof he can handle the difficult task of overseeing the mining industry in the state.
He said the new shadow cabinet should be finalised in coming days.
Image: Brisbane Times