15 September 2016
The KAP crossbench have today moved to amicably split North Queensland from the south of the state in Queensland Parliament tonight.
As part of a long running battle for further empowerment and self-determination for North Queensland, the minor party has pushed for annexation.
“We think it is important that we revisit lines that have been drawn on a map hundreds of years ago, and look at the way we manage the state and efficiently overcome social and economic problems,” Mr Katter said.
“Given some of the indicators of unemployment perhaps it is a good time to rethink things,” Mr Katter said.
“It is important to realise that this is not a move against the South East, this is a time we acknowledge our differences and take a different approach.
Mr Katter said despite the lack of support for the motion was extremely important start to a serious conversation.
“This is not a new idea, since the post-federation period there have been several petitions calling for areas of existing States,” Mr Katter said.
“A separate state would lead to a better outcome for the entire commonwealth, greater representation and more appropriate economic and social policies to allow the North to achieve its potential, “ he said.
Member for Dalrymple Shane Knuth said the split is a passion of many Queenslanders he has spoken to.
“The reality is we have almost twice the size of the population as Tasmania, but only one senator to represent the region in North Queensland,” Mr Knuth said.
“Those in North Queensland feel they have been left out of the decision making process through no fault of their own.
“It was the Southern based politicians that sold a profitable North Queensland coal rail operation, that turned over profits of around 1.7 billion a year,” he said.
“It is also Southern based politicians that continue to push for blanket legislation that may work in the south but simply isn’t suited to the north.
“Now these profits are going overseas and we have not seen any major industry infrastructure projects in North Queensland in the last 30 years,” he said
“This issue isn’t going away.”