Electorate

About the Mount Isa Electorate

Current Member: Rob Katter elected April 2012.

Profile

Based on the mining city of Mount Isa in the state’s north-west, the electorate stretches east along the Flinders Highway to take in Cloncurry, Julia Creek, Richmond and Hughenden and south-east along the Landsborough Highway to Winton. The electorate also takes in the gulf country including the towns of Burketown, Normanton and Karumba, the aboriginal community on Mornington Island, and also the old mining towns around Georgetown. Following the most recent redistribution, the electorate also stretches south to the South Australian border to take in remote Bedourie and Birdsville.

Redistribution

The redistribution has caused Mount Isa to increase in area, absorbing Georgetown, Hughenden and Richmond from Charters Towers, and also pushing south to take in remote Bedourie and Birdsville from Gregory.

History/Trivia

Mount Isa was first created in 1972 and won by Labor, but fell to the National Party at the 1974 landslide. The popularity of National MP Angelo Bertoni meant the seat did not return to the Labor fold until the 1983 election that followed the Coalition split. The new Labor MP proved unpopular and the seat was surprisingly won by the Liberal Party’s Peter Beard in 1986. Beard was elected Deputy Leader to Angus Innes but could not resist the swing that put Labor into office under Wayne Goss in 1989. Mount Isa was won at the 1989 election by Tony McGrady, who held the seat with ease until his retirement at the 2006 election. McGrady served in the Ministry 1991-1996 and again 1998-2005, finishing his last term in Parliament as Speaker. He was succeeded by Betty Kiernan at the 2006 election for two terms, then Rob Katter who won the seat convincingly in 2012.

The Electorate of Mount Isa is Queensland’s largest electorate; covering 570,502 square kilometres.

The Mount Isa electorate stretches from the Gulf of Carpentaria to the South Australian border in the far west of the state . Other towns include: Cloncurry, Julia Creek, Richmond, Hughenden and Winton (in the north-west and central-west); Burketown, Normanton, Karumba and Mornington Island (in the Gulf Country) and the small towns of Bedourie and Birdsville (in the Channel Country).

Economy

Mount Isa came to existence because of the discovery of a large mineral deposit over 85 years ago, and even today; mining and supporting industries are the cornerstone of our strong economy. Other major components of the Mount Isa economy include mineral processing, tourism and agriculture.

Mount Isa is the largest city in North West Queensland and services a region comparable in size to Victoria, making us the mining, industrial and commercial capital of North West Queensland. Mount Isa is also the main services centre for health, public administration and community services

Our strong and diverse economy has been identified as one of the two most resilient economies in Australia, with recent figures released from Bank West showing a 10% growth in employment since November 2007. The Bank West report paid tribute to our region’s ability to assist Australia to continue to weather the Global Financial Crisis, pin-pointing our area as a major “growth corridor”.

Swiss mining giant Xstrata Pty Ltd operates the Mount Isa Mines adjacent to the city, which comprises of both underground, open cut and metallurgical processing facilities. Xstrata Zinc recently announced the approval of more than $11 million to complete two major feasibility studies into the expansion of their Black Star open cut and George Fisher operations, both located within the City.

Mount Isa is recognised as one of the top two largest copper mining and smelter operations in the country. Copper and lead are smelted on site, with copper anodes and zinc concentrate being transported some 900 kilometres to the Port of Townsville on the east coast. The Mount Isa region has 23% of the world’s known zinc resources. New mining companies continue to explore the region, with at least two new companies planning to begin operations in early 2010.

Mount Isa recently celebrated its 85th year of commerce and community, and are looking forward to the next 85. Having successfully weathered the global economic crisis, Mount Isa and the region is moving forward in leaps and bounds. Recently, Xstrata announced that it would be investing a further $580 million into Ernest Henry Mine, located only an hour and a half away from the Mount Isa CBD.

Councils within the electorate

Winton Shire Council www.winton.qld.gov.au

Diamantina Shire Council www.diaantina.qld.gov.au

Boulia Shire Council www.boulia.qld.gov.au

Burke Shire Council www.burkeshirecouncil.com

Carpentaria Shire Council www.carpentaria.qld.gov.au

Cloncurry Shire Council www.cloncurry.qld.gov.au

Croydon Shire Council www.croydon.qld.gov.au

Doomadgee Aboriginal Shire Council www.doomadgee.qld.gov.au

Etheridge Shire Council www.etheridge.qld.gov.au

Flinders Shire Council www.flinders.qld.gov.au

McKinlay Shire Council www.mckinlay.qld.gov.au

Mornington Shire Council www.mornington.qld.gov.au

Mount Isa City Council www.mountisa.qld.gov.au

Richmond Shire Council www.richmond.qld.gov.au

Region