Costigan 'member for paradise'

"IF you don't call me the member for Whitsunday then how about the member for paradise?"

"To say we do our bit for the state and nation is like saying Bradman did his bit when he came out to bat in the baggy green."

The one-liners kept on coming throughout Whitsunday MP Jason Cositgan's lively maiden speech on Wednesday.

The rugby league enthusiast managed to get a few giggles out of his fellow parliamentarians during his first address to the House.

Mr Costigan grew up on the Brigalow Belt, where he watched his parents and grandparents farm the land in some times trying conditions.

His love for footy took him to a career in sports broadcasting before he worked as a journalist for the local newspaper.

Mr Costigan spoke proudly of his electorate, calling it the best geographical slice of Queensland.

Mr Costigan reiterated his election promise to take "a cane knife" to regulation threatening the livelihood of farmers.

He said he wanted to restore the balance between agriculture and the environment, but said he had always cared for the environment and always would.

The MP wants to see more airline flights into his electorate to bring families and young couples back to the Whitsundays.

"I have a vision to see more planes, more direct flights and more tourists come to the Whitsundays - some from faraway lands," he said.

Like many of his neighbouring MPs, Mr Costigan wants action on the Bruce Hwy.

He said he was "fed-up" with the flood-prone stretch between Mackay and Proserpine.

"This section … south of Proserpine must be addressed sooner rather than later because it cuts my electorate and the Mackay-Whitsunday region in half.

"This happens to be the biggest regional economy of the north.

"We are talking about a gross regional product for Mackay and the Whitsunday somewhere in the vicinity of $17 billion."

Mr Costigan briefly mentioned the prosperous resources boom that had not been so prosperous to some.

"Many people outside the sector struggle with everyday living," he said.

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