Get to know your candidates: Craig Armstrong, Greens
ENCOURAGING, progressing and facilitating renewable energy and new internet technologies will provide a positive platform for a thriving Maryborough region, according to Greens candidate for the region, Craig Armstrong.
Mr Armstrong, who works in Hervey Bay as a chef for Bay Explorers Early Learning Centre and lives in Maryborough, said this week he believed jobs creation could be developed through the renewable sector.
He said that an increase in renewable energy set-ups - which were already being rolled out - promoting new internet technologies and securing the best NBN connection possible, could attract new types of businesses and companies.
"A technology hub in the middle of town could feed into the cafe culture there, and our current industries, like manufacturing, can be backed by renewable energy to lower the carbon footprint.”
He said the sugar industry also had "a huge role to play” with its involvement in the biotech industry and its use as an alternative to fossil fuels.
Mr Armstrong, who ran because of "the twin threats of the coal mine and fracking” as well as a rise in popularity of the right side of politics, said he was keen for the opportunity to "influence debate around the direction of Maryborough and the state more broadly”.
"The Greens' policy platform is a broad-base platform where community is at its core, and its about the entire state.”
Mr Armstrong, who was born in Kyneton, Victoria, lived in Shepparton and moved to Hervey Bay in 1993, said he likes the "warmth” of Maryborough.
"It has decided to hang on to its heritage,” he said.
"We shouldn't forget the past and we're also meant to learn from it.
"I think Maryborough is a friendly town and it's positioned well, close to the highway, and has quite a few advantages over coastal towns.”
A father with a blended family of eight children and four grandchildren, Mr Armstrong is also a keen advocate of reducing electricity and living costs for families.
"In my current role, I'm responsible for feeding 100 children plus staff,” he said.
"This has forced me to reflect on the broader responsibility we have to our kids.”
He said the Greens backed an "old-fashioned” plan to reduce electricity costs.
"It's about the government taking back the energy network essentially - including the point of generation, distribution and retail - and selling it to the customers for cost price.”