Queensland electoral map: What changes mean for voters
QUEENSLAND'S political landscape has been cast into turmoil with electorates across the state radically reshaped and scrapped just months from an election.
An online copy of the Queensland Redistribution Commission's draft redesign of the electoral map yesterday sparked chaos and confusion in both major parties.
With four seats in the southeast corner and two new electorates created out of the remnants of old boundaries in the regions, both Labor and LNP MPs were last night calculating the cost and jockeying for the safest territory.
The extent and scope of the QRC's changes, described by one Labor insider as "mass carnage", astonished senior party officials and may end the careers of some of State Parliament's high profile MPs.
In Brisbane, Environment Minister Steven Miles will be pitted against Opposition treasury spokesman Scott Emerson after their electorates of Mt Coot-tha and Indooroopilly were morphed into a newly named seat of Maiwar.
Both parties last night claimed the upper hand in the electorate in the city's inner west, which takes in St Lucia, Fig Tree Pocket and Taringa as well as Mt Coot-tha.
The domino impact of boundaries changes and over-populated electorates caused the creation of the new seat, Macalister, which is south of the Brisbane River and takes in Beenleigh, Eagleby and Mount Warren Park.
Jordan has been created in the Ipswich area, taking in suburbs like Springfield.
The electorate of Bancroft has been drawn in the growth region between Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast including North Lakes and parts of Morayfield and Mango Hill.
Another new seat, Bonney, has been created on the Gold Coast between Southport and Broadwater while the Sunshine Coast has a new seat, Ninderry, between Noosa, Nicklin, Buderim and Maroochydore.
Not all the weighted western Queensland electorates with larger areas but fewer voters, developed through the famed changes brought down in the Electoral and Administrative Review Commission's 1992 report, survived.
Shane Knuth's electorate, Dalrymple, has been wiped from the map and replaced with the new seat of Hill.
The Dalrymple electorate of Katter's Australian Party's Shane Knuth, who has already survived one major redistribution, has been wiped from the map and replaced by the new seat of Hill.
The seat takes in parts of the old Dalrymple as well as parts of the Mulgrave and Hinchinbrook electorates while the nearby Burdekin electorate has been redrawn and renamed McMaster.
The move will likely pit Mr Knuth against the LNP's Dale Last and former LNP MP turned One Nation candidate Sam Cox at the election.
Fellow KAP MP Robbie Katter's Mount Isa electorate has been renamed Traeger.
The details of the commission's draft report were leaked online yesterday, less than 24 hours before the Queensland Redistribution Commission's draft report was due to be unveiled, sending both major parties into a spin.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk yesterday said she would fight the election on the new boundaries.
"It is my clear intention that we will fight the next election on whatever the electoral commission hands out," Ms Palaszczuk said.
It came after she initially refused to guarantee she would do so earlier this week, leaving the door open to an early election on old boundaries.
She issued a statement following the release of the draft boundaries late yesterday in which she said she expected all her sitting MPs to recontest the next election.
"The redistribution of the state's electoral boundaries ... may alter the electorate that thousands of Queenslanders belong to, but it does not change my Government's commitments to Queenslanders," Ms Palaszczuk said.
"I expect all members of my team will seek re-election, and ask their local communities to judge them on their performance.
"The next election, due in almost 12 months, will be contested in 93 electorates."
But she sheeted home the blame for the widespread changes to the LNP, reiterating it was their decision to add four new politicians to the Queensland Parliament.
Opposition Leader Tim Nicholls also pledged to accept the "umpire's" decision. "Given the electoral changes will affect many seats, the LNP will carefully study the findings and will engage with all its MPs and candidates before providing more public comment," he said.
The last redistribution of this magnitude took place in 1992, following the Fitzgerald Inquiry and the election of the Goss government.