ROBBIE Katter will push for the State Government to commit to funding a potential solution to Mount Isa’s inflated airfare prices.
The State Member for Mount Isa will call on Transport Minister Stirling Hinchliffe to fund a study into the overpriced price of air travel to the city during Parliament next week.
“As a starting point, the State Government should invest into an independent consultant to investigate the reasons behind the overpriced airfares which are stifling travel to and from our city,” Mr Katter said.
“If it does reveal price gouging, like we’ve long suspected, then there is a strong case for the government to act.”
“Next week in Parliament, I’ll be bringing this issue up and asking for the Transport Minister to fund a study into the route.”
Mr Katter has lobbied with Federal Member for Kennedy Bob Katter, and local woman Donna Sharpe, who rallied 6, 798 supporters to petition against the prices and delivered it to Qantas, Virgin and Queensland Airports Limited.
“The price of airfares is one of the biggest imposts on liveability in Mount Isa,” he said.
“As an already isolated city, our residents feel further disconnected due to the restrictive cost of flights.”
“It deters friends and family to the region and deprives the community of much-needed contributions to local economy.”
“We’ve seen Virgin come to Mount Isa and have no real impact on the prices – maybe it’s time we lobbied for a discount airline to service the route.”
Mr Katter slammed Qantas for putting profits over access for everyday Australians.
“Qantas has the motto ‘Spirit of Australia’ – unfortunately, the way they price a lot of their flights has nothing to do with the Australian spirit,” he said.
“It’s been reported Qantas CEO Alan Joyce’s salary has hit $13 million and the company turned a record full year underlying profit of $1.53 billion in 2016.”
“It’s time they put the ‘service’ back into the Queensland and Northern Territory Aerial Services (QANTAS).”