Kennedy LNP candidate push for NQ truck driver training school

Samantha Campbell
By Samantha Campbell
May 14 2022 - 9:00pm
Kennedy LNP candidate Bryce Macdonald and Federal Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz. Photo supplied.

LNP candidate for Kennedy, Bryce Macdonald, will push for a federally funded truck driver training school in North Queensland to meet growing demand for experienced staff in the freight and logistics sector.

Mr Macdonald made the pledge after meeting with North Queensland freight companies to promote the Coalition's efforts to improve safety, cut costs and enable better communication between industry and government.

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"Just in December the federal government announced it would fund truck driving apprenticeships - something the industry has been calling for for 30 years," he said.

"If elected, I'll be pushing for training to be done in the North so our local transport operators can directly benefit.

"Truck drivers are professionals and there's good money to be made by skilled operators, so I'll be doing anything I can to help people find good-paying, stable transport jobs in Kennedy and across the north."

Mr Macdonald was joined by federal assistant minister for road safety and freight transport, Scott Buchholz, for an at-times fiery meeting in Townsville with about 20 of the North's trucking bosses who regularly run loads in the Kennedy electorate to the north and west of the city.

Both Mr Buchholz and Mr Macdonald have a history of driving trucks, and discussed how the federal government is helping the booming freight industry.

"The Morrison government is delivering national leadership on road safety as well as continuing to deliver vital road safety initiatives including the $3 billion road safety program, $5.8 billion roads of strategic importance initiative, $7.2 billion roads to recovery program and the $1.3 billion black spots program," said Mr Buchholz.

"There is also $65.3 million to create and improve heavy vehicle rest areas and $180.1 million to improve safety at level crossings across Australia.

"We've announced road upgrades all over the North, including major works on the Atherton Tablelands, in Hinchinbrook and heading west from Townsville to the Gulf.

"This is all due to us having direct contact with industry and responding to their needs. I'm pleased to see a truck driver like Bryce contesting this election to add another experienced voice to the Parliament."

Mr Macdonald said that if elected, he would use his transport industry experience to lobby for increased concessions and incentives for truckies.

"The Morrison government is encouraging more mining in Kennedy, and Townsville is Australia's busiest live-export port, so demand for trucks and drivers will only grow," he said.

"The coalition's track record on consultation with the transport sector and action on issues has been excellent and it's important for the whole country that this continues."

Samantha Campbell

Samantha Campbell

Senior Journalist

Samantha Campbell (nee Walton) has worked for regional and rural publications across News South Wales and Queensland and is currently the senior journalist at the North West Star in Mount Isa. Sam enjoys family life on their cattle station with her husband and two kids and competes in local campdraft and rodeo events. Email: samantha.campbell@austcommunitymedia.com.au

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