Canavan is back, has Rookwood in his sights
GUESS who's back, back again?
Senator for Queensland Matthew Canavan is once again comfortably nestled in his former role as Minister for Resources and Northern Australia after safely negotiating an appearance at the High Court to challenge his dual-citizenship last week.
With Friday's highly anticipated High Court dual-citizenship verdict claiming the scalps his boss Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce and deputy leader Fiona Nash, the gratitude to be spared the chop and be back at work was clearly written across Senator Canavan's face.
"It's a relief, it's bitter sweet because a couple of others in our party have missed out, that's the way things go sometimes,” Mr Canavan said.
"We put a good case forward, we all respect the decision of the High Court and move on and fight on.”
He said he was glad to be back in his original role and admitted there was lot he wanted to do and achieve for this region and for Northern Australia.
"Now we've just got to get stuck back into it, there's a lot on our plate with the Galilee Basin looking to be opened up, we've got to get Rookwood over the line so there's no shortage of things to do,” he said.
The Rookwood Weir issue became a political 'hot potato' in recent weeks with Capricornia MP Michelle Landry saying the Queensland Government rejected a doubled funding offer of $260m and the Queensland Minister for Water Supply Mark Bailey writing to former Deputy Prime Minster Barnaby Joyce seeking written documentation supporting the offer.
"This new funding offer is potentially a game changer for the project and something that would have to be assessed, as it wasn't part of the business case,” a Queensland Government spokesperson said.
"For such a large amount of taxpayer money, formal confirmation in black and white is obviously a basic requirement.”
"The point of the business case for Rookwood Weir is to determine the feasibility of the proposed future water infrastructure project, whether it stacks up economically.
"Careful consideration is prudent given the significant ongoing financial contributions that may be required from both the Federal and State governments to build, operate and maintain the dam.”
A spanner was thrown into the works which Mr Joyce removed from the parliament and the Queensland Government calling an election just before a final decision could be made on Rookwood - delaying the project for months longer.
"We will now await a response from the Prime Minister who is currently Acting Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources,” the spokesperson said.
"The business case was due to be considered by government in October however as the Minister has stated, we need clarification of the funding deal on the table as this materially impacts the business case and therefore the decision.”
When Mr Canavan was questioned on whether a letter would be forthcoming to the Queensland Government he said, "I'm happy to talk with them, discuss it, but I'm not doing this letters at 10 paces, this is ridiculous.”
"This is a major project, we should be able to sit down as adults and have a discussion about it, I'm open to that.”