An LNP Opposition backbencher has made a rare move in State Parliament, one not seen for nearly three years.
An LNP Opposition backbencher has made a rare move in State Parliament, one not seen for nearly three years.

Opposition MP’s rare move in Parliament over mining

An LNP backbencher has broken ranks and crossed the floor to vote against his party's support for a mining rehabilitation commissioner.

In a scathing speech in parliament this afternoon, Member for Callide Colin Boyce slammed the Environmental Protection and Other Legislation Bill, claiming he was opposing the legislation on behalf of several industries.

The Bill, which passed, allows for an appointment of a commissioner who will provide advice on rehabilitation or best practice for management of land.

The rare move to cross the floor has not been seen since LNP Member for Gympie Tony Perrett voted against his party in October 2017 when he supported a Katter's Australian Party motion.

Labor seized on Mr Boyce's vote, taking to social media while also referring to it in the House.

Mr Boyce said the proposal to create a commissioner position seemed logical and reasonable on face value.

"However when you dig down into the substance of this proposal it's intent is entirely different," he said.

"The mining and resource sector already implements and practises worlds best rehabilitation and environmental standards that are second to none.

"To overlay another level of bureaucracy is totally unwarranted."

Mr Boyce told parliament the commissioner would take direction from the Minister with no specific qualifications necessary.

"This will be at a cost of millions to the taxpayer," he said.

"This clause is absolutely toxic in my opinion.

"It affords the minister, especially someone that may well be given to extremes of ideology, an opportunity to effectively weaponise any and all directions that are given to the rehabilitation commissioner.

"Effectively the rehabilitation commissioner may become a political hitman for a government of the day.

"This is especially relevant where the current government is captive of a Cabinet with ideological and political leanings overwhelmingly favouring extreme green eco Marxists ideology and by default a stand of anti agriculture, anti-resources, anti-development and therefore anti-employment and so anti-prosperity."

Mr Boyce claimed the commissioner would not be an independent position.

"To attach agriculture to this Bill, in particular requirements for an environmental authority for cropping and horticulture activities, is nothing short of appalling," he said.

"The report notes that the Bill will align application requirements for an environmental authority for cropping and horticulture activities with matters to be considered when making a decision to grant the environmental authority.

"Put simply, farmers will now face the prospect of having to lodge applications to a government department to plant their crops."

Originally published as Opposition MP's rare move in Parliament



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