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The wrong Queenslander is in charge of the economy!



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MEDIA RELEASE

Senator Sue Boyce Liberal - Queensland

Electorate Office: Level 9, 301 Coronation Drive, Milton, Qld

Telephone: (07) 3510 3100 Facsimile: (07) 3510 3111

MEDIA RELEASE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 22 February 2008

The wrong Queenslander is in charge of the economy!

Senator Sue Boyce, Liberal Senator for Queensland, said today that Human Services Minister, Senator Joe Ludwig, had played with numbers in abolishing a popular program that helped constituents with Centrelink and Medicare problems.

"The Minister announced the abolition of the Parliamentary Liaison Officer program on February 13 under the title 'Election commitment delivered' and said it saved $1.6 million over 4 years.

"But the actual election commitment, on the ALP website, says abolition of the program would save $52.5 million over 4 years.

"If Minister Ludwig can deflate the cost of a program from $52.5 million to $1.6 million in less than six months, this is the Queenslander we need in charge of the economy," Senator Boyce said.

Senator Boyce said the "smoke and mirrors" trick would be laughable if it did not have the potential to disadvantage thousands of Queenslanders desperate to sort out problems with Centrelink, the

Child Support Agency and Medicare.

"More than 11,000 people rang their local MP or Senator last year with problems that were then resolved by working with a liaison officer. 99.6 per cent of the problems were fixed within two days.

"These are all people with serious issues who have tried the usual ringing and writing to the agencies. The Minister has no answer for how these people are to be helped now," Senator Boyce said.

ENDS

Media contact: Yasmin Khan on 0419 025 510 or (07) 3510 3100