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2022 Federal Election Candidates Breakfast

With an election just around the corner, this morning’s Townsville Chamber of Commerce 2022 Federal Election Candidates’ Debate was a reminder that every vote matters for the seat of Herbert.

The 2022 Federal Election Candidates Debate was held this morning at The Ville Resort Casino and put the Federal candidates for Herbert in the spotlight as they answered important matters of concern to the business community.

The 2022 candidates for the seat of Herbert are Phillip Thompson (LNP), Clynton Hawks (KAP), Angela Egan (INP) Scott Humphreys (Greens), John Ring (ALP) and Greg Dowling (UAP), who was unable to attend this morning’s event due to staff shortages resulting from COVID-19. 

Hosted by the Townsville Chamber of Commerce, candidates were provided with the opportunity to outline their key priorities and policies in a four-minute opening address, before the commencement of a group panel discussion saw the floor open up to attendees for questions.

Key topics raised and debated included climate change and renewable energy, skills and training for the younger generations and discussion regarding major projects such as the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct and the emerging hydrogen industry.

Whilst there was much debate, there was a consensus amongst candidates that all levels of government need to work together to ensure key projects and outcomes can be delivered for the North Queensland region.

Photo credit: Philip Calder 

Chamber of Commerce President, Chris Rockemer, who moderated the panel discussion, notes that events such as this morning’s debate are critical in giving the business community a platform to express their needs and concerns and enables them to hear authentically from candidates about their policies ahead of the upcoming election.

“It’s really important for the business community to have unfettered access to candidates and we need open, honest and raw conversations that aren’t pre-recorded and aren’t rehearsed,” says Chris.

“The business community needs to put their concerns and questions to the candidates and be afforded a real answer, which was the goal of this morning’s event.

“I encourage the community to be informed about how you want Townsville and surrounding regions to be governed. Your vote really matters for the seat of Herbert, so don’t waste it.”

Photo credit: Philip Calder 

In a bid to educate and encourage the next generation of voters, high-school students were also in attendance and came armed with insightful questions on matters such as the current cost of tertiary education and how candidates plan to keep and retain local talent in the region. Chris says including these young students in the conversation is of vital importance to ensure the needs of future generations are being met.

“It is crucial that the business community engages with the student population so they can show them the way forward,” continues Chris.

“It is important for students to see that they can participate in the democratic process and that, in the future, these will be the rules that govern how they live in the region.

“It will also get them thinking about how they want their region to be shaped for their futures.”

Candidates for the Federal seat of Herbert all recorded interviews and can be streamed on your preferred podcast platform. Search Townsville ChamberCast.

Georgie Desailly

Georgie Desailly

Georgie is BDmag’s resident writer who is passionate about entrepreneurship, sustainability and regional affairs. She is preparing to study with The School of The New York Times later this year before commencing her journalism qualifications.