Crucial Gladstone town could fall to Pauline Hanson's One Nation

CHANGES to the state electoral boundary may have far reaching consequences, after the long serving member for Callide, Jeff Seeney, called it quits last week.

Under the proposed changes to the electoral boundaries, Calliope would be chopped out of Gladstone and passed over to the Biloela-based seat of Callide.

This move had many in Calliope scratching their heads, given Calliope's closer attachment to the city of Gladstone.

Gladstone MP Glenn Butcher was not happy about the decision but said he would work to ensure the proposed $60 million Calliope High School would go ahead.

It's not known if a Liberal National Party government would support funding for the school after the former Newman government tried to sell the land.

Although Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said she would accept the Queensland Redistribution Commission's changes, Mr Butcher said he would make a submission against the proposal.

Pauline Hansen in Gladstone June 24, 2016.Lower house candidate for Flynn, Phill Baker and Pauline Hansen.Photo Mike Richards / The Observer
Pauline Hansen in Gladstone June 24, 2016.Lower house candidate for Flynn, Phill Baker and Pauline Hansen.Photo Mike Richards / The Observer Mike Richards GLA240616PHAN

When the proposed changes surfaced two weeks ago Mr Butcher wasn't confident about reversing the Commission's decision.

Residents have until March 27 to lodge objections to the boundary changes. Next there will be a period of comment between April 8 and 18, followed by the final determination of electoral boundaries on May 26.

However, after the final determination a 21 day appeal period begins.

If any court action is taken then the boundaries will not be changed until that action has officially ended.

An Electoral Commission Queensland spokeswoman said if it accepted a suggestion, "it may alter a proposed boundary", but only if it complied with legislative requirements and did not "impact on other electorates".

If the boundary changes go ahead, not only will it increase parliamentary seats from 89 to 93 but it may mean Calliope could have a One Nation representative.

Political analyst Antony Green told the ABC, Callide had come close to being lost to One Nation in both the 1998 and 2001 elections.

"It's the sort of seat where One Nation and other conservative parties have a history of doing well," he told the ABC.

Click here to make your submission and see the proposed changes.



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