We’ve asked the Federal candidates: What will you do to support a strong, sustainable tourism sector for Hinkler?>

Earlier this month, I emailed all Hinkler candidates on behalf of our tourism industry and members, asking them to outline their party's tourism policies, what tourism means to them and what they will do to support a strong and sustainable local tourism sector if elected as our Federal Member on 21st May 2022.

If you would like to read my full letter to candidates, please click here.

Email recipients (in alphabetical order):

  • Jack Dempsey, Independent for Hinkler
  • Andrew McLean, The Greens for Hinkler
  • Zak Menhennett, Pauline Hanson's One Nation for Hinkler
  • Kristie Nash, United Australia Party for Hinkler
  • Keith Pitt, Liberal National Coalition for Hinkler
  • Jason Scanes, Australian Labour Party for Hinkler


Responses received (in order of rcpt):


Response from Jack Dempsey, Independent for Hinkler: (received as pdf)

These are my policy priorities for tourism, which I will advocate for if elected:

  • Increase the Tourism Australia Budget from an estimated $196.3 million in the current financial year to $250 million. Encourage and support ecotourism initiatives through a well-funded merit-based grants program.
  • Provide greater support for regional aviation that doesn’t involve “picking winners” like the Government did during Covid when North Queensland was favoured over Bundaberg. There should be Federal Government subsidies for airlines to expand into new regional markets. The Government should also extend regional airport security funding or introduce a cross-subsidy model so regional passengers aren’t slugged with higher airfares.
  • Legislate for net zero by 2050 with firm interim targets for 2030 and 2040. Urgent action is needed now to save the Great Barrier Reef and protect against rising sea levels.• Link the national Electric Vehicle network for self-drive and caravanning road trips.
  • Provide greater consistency in federal grants programs and ensure merit-based transparency in how these are allocated.
  • Develop and implement a workforce strategy to attract more international working visitors, international students, skilled migrants and backpackers; and provide vocational training for Australian citizens to have fulfilling careers in tourism.
  • Allow age pensioners to work without losing their benefits, to help address workforce shortages.
  • Invest in student accommodation on regional university campuses to free up beds for temporary workers. Increase the stock of public housing to relieve the lack of supply for people moving to live, work and stay in regional areas.
  • Provide easier access to finance for young entrepreneurs to start new businesses in tourism and hospitality.… 22/ • Duplicate the Bruce Highway between Brisbane and Cairns. Support road safety initiatives that improve the skills of caravanners and promote goodwill between all road users.
  • Improve internet speeds and mobile phone coverage in regional Australia. If elected, I'll support the Faster Internet for Regional Australia Bill introduced by Independent MP Helen Haines.
  • Develop a policy framework to address rising insurance premiums and the lack of affordable cover for many adventure-based tourism experiences.
  • Accelerate visa reform including lower fees and the rapid roll-out of streamlined online visa processes. If elected, I will always be responsive


Response from Keith Pitt, Liberal National Coalition for Hinkler: (recieved on email)

The tourism sector is one of the key pillars of the Hinkler economy and is renowned for turtles, whales, the Great Barrier Reef, rum, ginger beer, agriculture and many other tourist operations.

I have been a proud advocate of what our region has to offer and invite people to Hinkler at every opportunity I get!

  • Events like the Taste Festival have put the Bundaberg region on the foodie map and I hope to see this continue to grow and evolve.
  • The sector has done it tough over the past two years and the Coalition Government has provided more than $20 billion in assistance to the tourism and hospitality industry nationwide through JobKeeper, the Cash Flow Boost and targeted programs.
  • Australia’s zoos, aquariums and wildlife park including Snakes Downunder and Flying High Bird Sanctuary at Childers, and Alexandra Park Zoo in Bundaberg were supported to help care for their animals, and ensure these attractions remained viable and ready to welcome visitors back.
  • More than $12 million for the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority was provided to extend fee relief for local tourism businesses impacted by the pandemic.
  • The Coalition Government has a plan to grow the total value of the visitor economy to $230 billion by 2030 including $100 billion for regional Australia, to support more jobs and opportunities.
  • We have a range of initiatives to attract more tourists and backpackers to Australia, we’re ensuring we have the infrastructure to make sure our visitors get where they need to, and we’re investing in the Great Barrier Reef and our national parks.
  • A re-elected Coalition Government will invest $15 million in wine, spirits and craft brewery tourism grants for cellar door or tourism-associated facilities and invest an additional $20 million to extend our recreational fishing program to build, upgrade, or maintain camping, boating and fishing infrastructure.

The key to an even stronger future is the stronger economy that will support the tourism industry to diversify international markets and increase the range and type of experiences we have on offer.


Response from Kristie Nash, United Australia Party for Hinkler: (received as PDF)

  • 25% of the wealth generated from regions in Australia to be returned to those regions and reinvested.
  • Repay our national debt with a 15% export levy on Australian iron ore so this massive debt can be repaid over 20 years to help regulate inflation and so that the people of our nation do not have to dip into their pockets to repay it.
  • Provide a 20% tax concession incentive to people (and businesses) who are more than 200kms from a capital city to encourage decentralisation.
  • Scrap provisional tax to allow an extra $90 Billion to circulate in the Australian economy which results in increase GST revenue and saves more business closures from occurring.
  • Abolish Fringe Benefits Tax to release over $6 Billion into the economy.
  • Reduced taxation on earnings from a second job to incentivise and uplift the workforce shortages.
  • Support safe, innovative nuclear power generation to reduce our energy costs using Australian uranium to bring business and household energy costs more into line with the rest of the world.
  • Cap interest on home loans at a maximum of 3% for 5 years. Many business owners use their home as security for business purposes, therefore this innovative policy safeguards the potential loss of homes as well as businesses due to inflationary pressures.
  • Process Australian minerals at home for the benefit of all Australians, by providing more jobs and revenue to the people of our nation.
  • The first $30,000 paid on a home loan to be made tax deductible each year. Designed to put more money into the back pockets of everyday Australian’s and to boost the construction industry.
  • The UAP will forgive and remove all HECS fees to make it easier for young Australians to become skilled and to give them hope and encouragement for their future. The more highly skilled workforce we have as a country, the more prosperous we will become.
  • Stronger support and improved labelling for ‘produce and products’ created in Australia. The UAP encourages Australian production over imports and will have strong government policies to underpin this objective.