The latest jobs slated for a move as part of the Government’s Decentralisation Policy are a political play rather than a sensible decision for the good of the regions.
The Nationals have announced they want to move 50 Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) jobs from Sydney to Coffs Harbour by 2022.
These jobs will be moved to a seat held by the Nationals, while a handful of AMSA jobs will also be sent to another Queensland seat held by the party.
Decentralisation has to be about more than blatant pork barrelling in the lead up to an election. The ad hoc shifting of jobs in and out of regional cities is not good public policy.
You cannot trust the Coalition to handle decentralisation properly. These public service jobs cannot be used a play for votes.
That’s if they ever get to the point of moving.
Only 8 of 198 staff at the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) have moved to Armidale from Canberra since the Government announced its Decentralisation policy in 2017.
The Minister for Decentralisation today claimed 1150 jobs have been moved since 2013 - four years before their policy was even announced.
However, hundreds of jobs that have been lost to regional Australia over the same period under the Coalition are glossed over.
While 50 jobs would no doubt be welcomed in regional Australia, it does not offset more than 1200 Department of Human Services positions cut by this Government.