Queensland ICT opposition spokesperson Fiona Simpson has rejected comments by state ICT Minister Robert Schwarten yesterday that one of her party's election policies would have a "disastrous" effect on government.
Queensland ICT opposition spokesperson Fiona Simpson has
rejected comments by state ICT Minister Robert Schwarten yesterday
that one of her party's election policies would have a "disastrous" effect on
Qld shadow ICT Minister Fiona Simpson (Credit: LNP)
Labor Minister Schwarten yesterday said a policy he believed
would see a LNP government cut $30 million from government
technology spending showed the party's ignorance of the importance
of ICT spending. However Simpson, shadow Minister for
Infrastructure, Main Roads and Transport, denied the claim.
"The government doesn't seem to understand that spending money
more wisely creates jobs as well as getting more bang for the
taxpayers buck," she said in a statement today.
"We have had a strong response from industry insiders alerting
us to poor management of the government's ICT budget and they are
keen to see their industry advanced by better management within the
public sector, in partnership with the private sector."
Simpson added the state's ICT industry (represented by
individuals within government and the private sector) was talking
with her office about better ways to spend taxpayers' money and
achieve smarter outcomes in Queensland.
"The minister may not be listening to industry but his own
public servants know efficiencies will secure Queensland jobs, not
threaten them," she added.
Schwarten's attack yesterday suffered a misstep due to his
assumption it was his usual parliamentary opponent, Shadow Minister
for Housing Affordability and Public Works, Ray Stevens, that was
responsible for ICT policy within the opposition.
However, yesterday the minister told ZDNet.com.au it was an
honest mistake to make because neither Stevens nor Simpson had
questioned him in parliament on matters of ICT policy. Stevens
normally opposes Schwarten due to the minister's additional
portfolios of Public Works and Housing.
We have had a strong response from industry insiders alerting us to poor management of the government's ICT budget
The news comes as both sides of politics have come under
pressure from Queensland's ICT industry this week, with a lobby
group representing a large part of the industry placing
advertisements demanding support from both sides of politics to
boost technology jobs and the industry as a whole.
Today 100 of the state's ICT leaders are planning to converge
on Brisbane to urge Premier Anna Bligh and Springborg to commit to
the industry's strategy of creating 30,000 new ICT jobs in the
state, adding to the industry's existing 70,000-strong
Some of those attending include Data#3 managing director John
Grant, Sundata managing director Kon Kakanis, Technology One
operating officer Roger Phare, SMS Management and Technology
associate Grant Cause and University of Queensland IT services and
Australian Computer Emergency Response Team (AusCERT) director Nick
Others named by the Queensland ICT Industry Workgroup include
former Queensland Government CIO and head of Microsoft's Queensland
division Peter Grant, GBST Holdings chair John Puttick and
Peoplebank Queensland manager John Egan. The state election will be held on 21 March.