Victorian Senator Bridget McKenzie has supported a Federal Government move to establish its own inquiry into decentralisation following the recent ‘‘Labor-dominated’’ Senate inquiry.
‘‘That inquiry held only one hearing, in Townsville, and rejected my calls for further regional hearings to give local councils and community groups the chance to make a submission,’’ the Nationals Senator said.
‘‘Eighty-five regional councils made supportive submissions to the Senate inquiry, even offering to host hearings, an offer rejected by the Labor-dominated committee.
‘‘Instead that committee will hand down its Senate report on Friday (June 9) with predictable attacks on the government decentralisation program.
‘‘Everywhere I travel throughout regional Victoria and in other states, there is a massive amount of support, from councils in particular, keen to have a government agency or office in their region.
‘‘Decentralisation makes such good sense economically, commercially and for individuals and families moving out of the city into the freedom and health of the country.
‘‘The Murray-Darling Basin Authority moving some of their staff to Wodonga has been applauded by the town as have other regions who will also shortly welcome government agency staff to their areas,’’ Senator McKenzie said.