I have lived in Maranoa most of my life and have had the opportunity to travel across this amazing part of Australia many times since I was young, particularly over the past few months.
Maranoa is blessed with excellent resources and resilient people, and its future is bright.
Government just needs to support Maranoa in a few key ways and then get out of the road to let it flourish.
The first thing government can do better to support people in Maranoa is to not take it for granted.
Given it is not a marginal seat (well not until now), Maranoa misses out on its fair share of funding.
Much of the wealth generated in industries such as agriculture, mining, gas, and tourism ends up funding government projects along the coast.
It’s time the government focussed on delivering more important projects in the bush.
We need better telecommunication services, water security, roads, and health services.
Under my representation, I would want to have 25 per cent of the wealth generated by Maranoa reinvested in the electorate, which is United Australia Party policy.
This would be a game-changer for the people of Maranoa.
If this were to happen, no longer would the electorate be the poor cousin to those in the more suburban, coastal areas of our great nation.
Protecting our freedoms is another thing government can do to ensure the people of Maranoa flourish.
We need an Australian Bill of Rights to protect freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and freedom of choice with our health.
People in Maranoa, and right across Australia for that matter, need protection to say what’s on their mind without censorship from Big Tech or being silenced by the noising minority.
We also need religious freedom protected so our faith-based organisations such as schools can continue to have the ability to only employ staff who adhere to the beliefs, values, and lifestyle requirements inherent within the tenets and teachings of their particular faith.
Lastly, we need to protect freedom of choice so a ‘no jab, no job’ policy never again sees nurses, ambulance officers, teachers, and police officers lose their ability to earn and living and assist others through their profession.
Finally, I would like to see zonal taxation introduced so those living west of the Great Divide pay less tax.
Not only would this put more money into the pockets of those living in electorates such as Maranoa, but it would also help decentralise Australia.
The United Australia Party has a policy whereby every individual and business 200 kms or more from a capital city is provided with a 20 per cent tax concession. This would encourage growth and revitalisation in our regions.
Towns in Maranoa that are currently shrinking could see an injection of life.
With greater investment and opportunities in our regional communities, young people would be able to remain in their home town to live and work if they so desired, and more professionals could move into the regions to bolster important areas such as our health services.
Zonal taxation isn’t new – it existed under Liberal governments in the 1960s and is constitutional under Commonwealth laws.
We need to see zonal taxation brought back to benefit the people of Maranoa.