This week I am hosting the Federal Assistant Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator Anne Ruston in Kimba and Cowell.
Senator Ruston’s portfolio makes her directly responsible for fisheries and the aquaculture industry and as a South Australian, she has lead responsibility for agriculture in the state.
Amongst other things she will visit Eyre Premium Hay and Lienert Engineering in Kimba and the new Eyre Shellfish oyster hatchery in Cowell.
Senator Ruston has been a valuable supporter of the oyster industry as it has dealt with the very difficult fallout of the Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome (POMS) outbreak having allocated almost $1 million to continue the breeding program delivering a resistant strain of oyster.
Having Senator Ruston and other ministers on the ground in my local communities is very important in getting messages across in Canberra.
This week alone I will be hosting Aged Care and Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt in Ceduna on Tuesday and Peterborough on Wednesday.
On Thursday I will be joining Education Minister Simon Birmingham in Port Pirie. In the second half of last year I had a highly productive visit from the Transport Minister pushing the benefits of sealing the Strzelecki Track and duplication of the Port Augusta Bridge.
Julie Bishop joined me in Burra and a couple of months before that Josh Frydenberg was in Whyalla and Port Augusta.
The importance of getting Malcolm Turnbull, who has visited the electorate three times in the last two years, and Arthur Sinondinos to Whyalla in eliciting the commonwealth engagement on saving the Whyalla steel works cannot be overestimated and I also have had the ministers for rural health and small business join me in Whyalla and Port Pirie respectively.
The value of a visit cannot be overrated because it is such a long way in both the physical and metaphoric sense from inner city Melbourne and Sydney to almost anywhere in an electorate like Grey.
The great advantage I do have is that once they know a little they are very keen to visit to see for themselves because the electorate of Grey is something special.
I know Senator Ruston’s visit this week to our region will be extremely valuable.
Federal Member for Grey