The Weatherill Labor Government’s decision to spend $2.6 million on an advertising campaign for its $550 million energy plan is a kick in the teeth to the communities of the Upper Spencer Gulf.
“Jay Weatherill committed a pathetic $1 million of new money for job creation in the communities of the Upper Spencer Gulf after he forced the Northern Power Station to close down but he’s going spend $2.6 million trying to save his own job,” said Shadow Minister for Energy Dan van Holst Pellekaan.
“This disgraceful advertising campaign lays bare the hypocrisy that lies at the heart of the Weatherill Government.
“Jay Weatherill is only interested in his own job and willing to spend millions of dollars of taxpayers’ money to keep it.
“Jay Weatherill abandoned the 500 workers who were employed at the Northern Power Station and Leigh Creek Mine when he refused to provide just $8 million a year to keep the station open.
“As a result of that disastrous decision the price of electricity in South Australia has skyrocketed and hundreds of families have been driven from their communities.
“Having forced the Northern Power Station to close down, driving up the price of electricity, Jay Weatherill has now been forced to throw $550 million at fixing the problem he created.
“Jay Weatherill will spend at least $110 million on dirty diesel generators to keep the lights on after he closed down the Northern Power Station because it used coal.
“The $2.6 million advertising campaign the Weatherill Government is funding to save its political neck is the ultimate insult to the hundreds of families impacted by his decision to force the Northern Power Station to close.
“Alinta’s withdrawal from the north of South Australia has been as devastating as the closure of Holden will be for the north of Adelaide.
“The Weatherill Government failed to develop a comprehensive plan to ensure the people of Port Augusta, Leigh Creek and the surrounding towns are properly supported during this very difficult time.
“Rather, the Weatherill Government has developed an advertising campaign to deflect the blame for his failures.”