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Queensland

Live Q&A with LNP Griffith candidate Bill Glasson

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Kristian Silva: Thanks for joining us today, it's been great to have Dr Glasson in the brisbanetimes.com.au office to answer your questions.

We did our best to get through as many questions as possible.

Look forward to more coverage of the Griffith byelection on our website as February 8 draws closer.

Question: 

Answer: John thank you for your question.

As a doctor, there is nobody a greater advocate for the anti-smoking lobby than myself.

As a doctor, I see the health consequences every day in my medial practice and as previous chairman of Cancer Australia we see the whole range of cancers with increased incidence associated with people who smoke.

I am pleased to report that as a consequence of some strong advocacy from myself and others, the LNP no longer receives donations from tobacco companies.

Kristian Silva: Question: This question comes from me, the moderator. Bill, how do you rate your chances in Saturday's byelection and what are your thoughts on your key opponent, Terri Butler?

Answer: I do not go into a race to come second so we are working very hard.

Given this is a by election my job is doubly difficult.

It is not for me to comment or judge on my opponent it is for the electorate of Griffith. However we have had a number of pleasant exchanges throughout the campaign.

 

Question: Mike D, on Twitter: What would Bill Glasson do to encourage active transport, like cycling in our electorate?

Answer: As a keen cyclist having rode from Brisbane to Sydney twice, I would like to see an improvement in cycle lanes on the roads in Griffith. I was talking to the Lord Mayor about this issue recently in particular Wynnum Road, which we plan to widen in parts to make safer, as it is a route much used by our cyclists. I am also in discussion about building a bridge over Norman Creek for cyclists and walkers.

There also needs to be a courtesy from drivers towards cyclists in sharing our roads into the future.

Question: 

Answer: Jessie, the reef is a world heritage area that needs to be protected at all costs.

In terms of the current dredging dump this was a decision made by the authority to be safe in terms of not affecting the reef viability. I trust their judgement.

Question: 

Answer: You bet. My track record will show that I have taken on both sides of government very passionately on issues, which I believe are important to the group that I represent. 

I am a great team player but I always ensure that my voice is heard loudly within that team.

Question: Peter Whittle: Bill, what's your take on the LNP environment policy? It seems to me that the government sees environment as a hindrance. Do you agree? What's your baseline? And I'm asking you, not the party.

Answer: Peter, I completely support the abolition of the regressive carbon tax which is a major financial impost on families and businesses in Australia. When we know the tax will know no difference to the carbon emissions. This is also making our businesses less competitive with the world.

I prefer to use the carrot rather than the stick therefore the LNP's proposed direct action plan which there are two major arms- the emission reduction fund (ERF) and the fifteen thousand Green Army.

The ERF rewards companies who demonstrate a reduction their carbon footprint with our aim to reduce carbon emissions by 5 per cent of the 2000 levels by 2020. Is that enough? I'm not sure.

We have to leave this planet better for our children than when we found it.

Question: @parakev, on Twitter: Does he agree with children in detention?

Answer: Absolutely not.

At the end of the Howard government we had no children in detention.

At the end of the Rudd/Gillard government we have 1000 children in detention. Obviously not acceptable but we have to fit the problem of illegal boats / people smuglers otherwise this issue will not go away.

Thank you for your compassion. Bill

Question: 

Answer: Craig, I am a great infrastructure man, in fact I had a meeting with the Deputy Prime Minister two weeks ago talking about the proposed plan to take underground rail from the current port of Brisbane out to our freeway system.

This would remove our overground coal train issues, for example dust and noise.

Our urban rail system continues to be upgraded, including rail crossings.

Question: Sean Titmarsh: With Australia's ageing copper network propelling us further behind the rest of the world, will you support [Fibre To The Premises] NBN?

Answer: Sean, we have a coalition NBN plan which aims to deliver fit for purpose outcomes to meet the data needs of whatever facility we are aiming to service. We will certainly deliver fibre to our businesses, hospitals, schools, government agencies etc and in terms of the home we will have fibre to the node (the box in front of your house) and with this we can deliver up to 50 megabits per second or higher. This will be delivered two years earlier and $27 billion less in cost than the proposed Labor plan.

Question: Sean Vickery: With Australia now starting to fall behind other developed nations in education standards, does Mr Glasson support the major increase in school funding - the full amount over six years - introduced by the previous Labor government?

Answer: I am a great advocate for education as this will define our future as a nation.

As you may know $1.2 billion was removed from the education budget three weeks prior to the last general election by the previous Labor government. That $1.2 billion plus an extra $1.6 billion has been reinstated by the current Abbott LNP federal government.

Queensland was not even included in the previous agreement but now there has been an agreement reached across all states and territories Australia to ensure the education sector gets the funding it deserves. 

The LNP government also has a strong focus on educational outcomes as well as as appropriate funding and therefore a review of our curriculum, including a move to give greater autonomy for our principals and parents will take place.

Question: James, on Twitter: If, as he says, the election isn't about Newman or Abbott, what is it about?

Answer: This byelection is about electing the next Federal Member for Griffith, it is not about changing government.

On Sunday 9th Tony Abbott will still be the PM, Campbell Newman will still be the Queensland Premier.

Griffith needs an experienced member who can bring a strong voice to the current Federal Parliament. I believe that voice needs some life experience: in raising a family, running a small business, having held previous leadership positions, experienced in volunteering within our society and importantly working on both sides of government. Also a voice with a plan for the future of Griffith. I believe I can be that person.

Question: Norman Love: Bill Do you support Gay Marriage?

Answer: The LNP position currently is that marriage is between a man and a woman, if a conscience vote is brought before the parliament, I would support marriage for all Australians

Question: Mark Davies: Will Bill agree with a fee for doctor visits and if so, should a review go into the full amount being required to be paid when visiting a doctor?

Answer: Mark, one of the key issues in term of the current funding of Medicare is that the Medicare levy attracts around $8 billion to $9 billion in revenue yet the costs are in the order of $17 billion and increasing much larger than the CPI every year. I am a stern advocate for bulk billing to ensure that our most disadvantaged eg: children, elderly, poorest and sickest are not denied access to appropriate medical care.

Currently in Australia 29 per cent of medical practices bulk bill only, and 71 per cent bulk bill a proportion of their patients. Governments do not force doctors to bulk bill it is the decision of the doctor concerned. Therefore in order to preserve the level of doctors bulk billing we need to ensure the rebate fee is at a level that ensures doctors are able to pay for their overhead costs and maintain business viability.

Kristian Silva: Good afternoon and welcome to our live Q&A session with Griffith LNP candidate Dr Bill Glasson.

With the byelection to be held on Saturday, this is one of the final chances for the public to quiz Dr Glasson about his plans for Griffith, should he be elected.

Dr Glasson will be answering questions until 1pm.

It's not too late to submit your query. Just get in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter or email scoop@brisbanetimes.com.au