Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga at the rally opposing the expansion of the Shoalwater Bay Training area at the Lakes Creek Hotel in Rockhampton.
Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga at the rally opposing the expansion of the Shoalwater Bay Training area at the Lakes Creek Hotel in Rockhampton. Chris Ison ROK010217crally5

Brittany Lauga praises PM back down on forced sales

NEWS farmers will not have their land taken by compulsory acquisition for the expansion of Shoalwater Bay Military Training Area is music to the Keppel MP's ears.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made the announcement this morning that landholders will not be forced to sell their land to the defence for the expansion. See the full story here: PM move to scrap forced Shoalwater acquisitions a victory for landholders

Keppel MP Brittany Lauga has praised "people power" for forcing Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to scrap compulsory land acquisition in the Marlborough region.

"Despite a backflip today from Mr Turnbull to find alternative areas for Shoalwater Bay's expanded military defence precinct, we want the compulsory acquisition process dumped altogether," Ms Lauga said.

"Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, and his offsiders Michelle Landry and Senator Matt Canavan, have caused incredible stress and heartache to the people in the Marlborough district by declaring he was taking their homes and livelihood without any consultation."

Ms Lauga pointed to the 37 properties in the 162,000 hectares of land in the proposed acquisition zones mapped out by the Department of Defence on its website.

She also reflected on the Prime Minister's announcement last week that the Defence Department had been told to find alternatives areas.

"While I welcome Mr Turnbull's belated decision to order the Defence Department to find alternative areas, which included prime CQ farming land, I want compulsory acquisition to be scrapped completely,"

"I'm proud to have stood by these people, meeting with them, supporting them, organizing assistance for them and, along with Premier Annastasia Palaszczuk, Treasurer Curtis Pitt, Minister for Agriculture Bill Byrne and Member for Mirani Jim Pearce, we led a vocal and powerful rally calling on Mr Turnbull to stop this compulsory acquisition.

"At last week's rally held with nearly 400 people, we moved a motion that we were against Mr Turnbull's compulsory action plan, and hundreds signed a petition based on that motion.

"This has shamed him into today's backflip which does not go far enough.

"The people of Marlborough region need surety that their livelihoods will never be threatened again, and that can only come with the total scrapping of the compulsory acquisition policy.

"But let's not forget the amount of stress and anguish Mr Turnbull's blundering decision to steal the land, homes and properties in that region from the people who have lived and worked there for generations.

"That is his shame, and I'm proud that the Queensland Government and the Queensland Labor Party stood by these people in their hour of need."



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