Minister for Ports David Hodgett has welcomed the Opposition’s agreement for Shadow Minister for Ports Natalie Hutchins to face him in a debate on opposing ports policies.
“After more than a month of resistance from the Opposition Leader’s Office, we have an agreement where Ms Hutchins is prepared to stand up in front of the communities of Geelong and Hastings and explain why Labor plans to turn its back on Hastings, whose expanded port is an option which the shipping industry, the Government, and even the Opposition themselves when they were in Government, supported,” Mr Hodgett said.
The first debate will take place on Monday 6 October in Geelong and will be hosted by the Committee for Geelong and G21.
“The debate in Geelong will give the community an opportunity to hear from Ms Hutchins as to why Labor prefers the environmentally disastrous Bay West proposal,” Mr Hodgett said.
Mr Hodgett said the Coalition Government welcomed this opportunity to present its strong and coherent policy to the communities of Geelong and Hastings.
“As I have maintained, this is an issue of critical importance to Victoria. This project will help shape our state for the next century, and all Victorians deserve more than the flip-flopping, back of a napkin, ideas that the Opposition has floated to date.
“I am pleased that Ms Hutchins has finally been allowed to accept my request to debate, and I look forward to giving the communities in Geelong and Hastings the chance to hear both policies on this important issue,” Mr Hodgett said.