Dr Christian Rowan MP, the State Member for Moggill, has advised that the LNP Opposition has today thrown its full support behind small, family-owned electrical businesses facing ruin under the Palaszczuk Labor Government.
“Shadow Small Business and Employment Minister Tim Nicholls and Shadow Energy Minister Andrew Powell stood beside ‘sparkies’ at Parliament House to launch a petition protesting Labor’s plan to allow a government-owned mega energy company to compete against mum and dad business owners”, Dr Rowan said.
“Labor’s crazy plan to merge Energex with Ergon and then allow the new company to unfairly bid against sparkies for bread and butter electrical work shows the contempt they have for small business,” Dr Rowan said.
“When we attempted to ask questions about the impacts of creating this new company during a Parliamentary Committee hearing this morning Labor’s ETU-backed committee chair Shane King ran interference.
“Labor jumps to attention when the ETU calls but couldn’t care less about the damage they will do to sparkies across the state. That’s just not good enough.
“We urge every small business owner in Queensland to sign up to the e-petition to ensure they’re not next in line to be forced to compete against a state-owned
Dr Rowan said the Labor government could require government agencies to use the merged electricity company rather than their local sparky.
“Will we now see Labor direct all government departments to use this government-owned, taxpayer-funded monstrosity putting hundreds of small businesses and the families that run them at risk?”
“Surely Energy Minister Mark Bailey’s first priority should be to have the electricity companies getting the basics right, rather than having them branch out into services already provided by electricians,” Dr Rowan said.
CEO of Master Electricians Queensland, Malcom Richards said his organisation had been inundated with calls from concerned small business owners.
“Master Electricians has already expressed our grave concerns about the potential abuse of market power by the State Government setting up its own business to compete head to head with small electrical businesses. Our e-petition to the Queensland Parliament calls on the State Government not to throw Queensland small businesses and their workers under the bus.
“Mum and dad businesses would never be able to afford to borrow money or sustain losses in the same way the State Government can. The only possible result from head-to-head competition would be small businesses being sent to the wall.
“It flies in the face of the fundamental beliefs of a free enterprise society that people who invest in businesses will not find themselves competing with the government.”