The Federal Government has introduced its controversial mining tax bills to parliament.
However, Independent Tony windsor has raised a political obstacle to the proposed laws, by demanding more research into the coal seam gas industry, before he will support the legislation.
Amy Kelly reports.
It’s been a long time coming, but finally the package of bills that would make the Gillard government’s mineral resource rent tax a reality, is now before Federal Parliament.
However, there has been a political setback, with Independent MP Tony Windsor demanding research into the impacts of coal seam gas mining on farm land before he would support the bill.
While some say Mr Windsor’s stance is holding the government to ransom, those worried about the effects of coal seam gas mining support his call.
Drew Hutton, Lock the Gate Alliance President: “If Tony Windsor can get leverage by using his vote for getting the mining tax through then that’s fine.”
But in Queensland where coal seam gas plays an increasingly important role in the economy, some, like Premier Anna Bligh, believe any unnecessary regulation of the industry will scare away investors.
The Premier says that Tony Windsor and his independent colleagues have little understanding of what happens in Queensland, and has invited them to come and see the coal seam gas industry first hand.
The Federal Finance Minister Penny Wong says the government will continue to negotiate with Mr Windsor and other cross benchers to secure support for the legislation.
Amy Kelly, QUT News.