New Cabinet for the 10th ACT Legislative Assembly
The new ACT Cabinet will pursue an ambitious and progressive agenda outlined in the Parliamentary and Governing Agreement for the 10th Legislative Assembly. This includes supporting Canberra’s economic recovery, investing in health and education and more action on climate change to ensure our city is continuing to demonstrate national leadership in the transition to zero-net emissions.
The once in a lifetime economic shock our city has experienced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic will require a sustained recovery effort – making the right investment choices and maintaining a level of confidence in our economy to support local businesses.
In the new Cabinet, I will take whole of Government leadership of our climate change response through the new Climate Action portfolio. A key priority in this portfolio will be to commence work on Canberra’s Big Battery – the largest battery storage system in Australia, as well as the rollout of the Sustainable and Resilient Household Scheme and our climate change adaptation and resilience programs.
Deputy Chief Minister Yvette Berry will lead the Government’s work to implement one day of free early learning for three year olds as Minister for Early Childhood Development. Yvette will also take on the Youth Affairs portfolio as Minister for Education.
Mick Gentleman will continue as Minister for Planning and Land Management, focusing on completing the Territory Plan Review over the next term of Government. Mick also adds Corrections and Industrial Relations and Workplace Safety to his portfolios.
ACT Greens Leader Shane Rattenbury will be Attorney-General, and will be tasked with bringing forward legislation to increase the age of criminal responsibility in the ACT – keeping children out of incarceration.
Having helped manage the health impacts of COVID-19 on our community, Rachel Stephen-Smith will continue as the ACT’s Minister for Health. Rachel will have oversight over the single largest expansion of health infrastructure in the Territory’s history over the next four years – including the Canberra Hospital expansion and a new network of walk-in health centres.
Chris Steel will continue as the ACT’s Transport and City Services Minister and Minister for Skills. In these portfolios, Chris will be responsible for progressing light rail to Woden, and the construction of a new CIT campus in the Woden Town Centre.
Chris will also take on a new role as Special Minister of State, helping to drive improvements in government operations such as expanded digital services, access to information and cyber security. As per similar roles in other jurisdictions, the Special Minister of State will oversee reforms to further improve the ACT’s nation-leading electoral system.
The ACT Cabinet will welcome three, new female Ministers.
Tara Cheyne will be responsible for a number of portfolios, including Minister for Business and Better Regulation. This fulfils Labor’s election commitment to have a dedicated Minister for Business.
Rebecca Vassarotti will be the Minister for the Environment, as well as Minister for Sustainable Building and Construction. In this role, Rebecca will oversee the building quality reforms outlined in the Parliamentary and Governing Agreement.
Emma Davidson will also enter the Ministry as Assistant Minister for Families and Community Services, Minister for Disability, Minister for Justice Health and Minister for Mental Health. Emma will be overseeing an expanded investment in mental health services in response to growing demand.
The new, majority female Cabinet consists of six Labor and three Greens MLAs and will meet for the first time early next week.
I will chair the Government’s Expenditure Review Committee, with Yvette Berry and Shane Rattenbury as we begin work on the 2020-21 ACT Budget that will be delivered in February 2021.
- Statement ends -
Section: Andrew Barr, MLA | Media Releases
(02) 6205 2974
0422 772 215