THE Greens launched a renewed election campaign on Thursday when Janelle Bicknell was announced as its candidate for the upcoming Orange byelection.
Ms Bicknell will promote renewable energy, oppose TAFE cuts and forced council mergers and support a greyhound racing ban as part of her campaign leading into the November 12 byelection.
The state seat was vacated by The Nationals’ Andrew Gee ahead of his successful bid to become the federal member for Calare.
Ms Bicknell is a registered nurse specialising in mental health for older people and is motivated to strive for community-based sustainability and equality.
Ms Bicknell also ran for The Greens at the last state election, achieving a record high election result for the party in the electorate via a swing of 2.3 per cent.
“The recent federal election saw The Greens vote reach a new high in Calare and Central West communities are looking for a party with committed candidates with a positive vision for the region’s future,” Ms Bicknell said.
“The future of the Central West must be about making the region a heartland for clean energy as the world tackles global warming, delivering the quality health, education and social services and infrastructure our region needs, respecting local democracy and protecting our precious local environment, water and biodiversity.”
Ms Bicknell said a focus of her campaign will be on clean renewable energy and said due to large open spaces and plenty of sunlight the Orange region was well suited as a base for solar energy plants.
She is also in support of the greyhound racing ban, which will come into effect in July next year, saying there was wastage of between 50 and 70 per cent of dogs registered each year and between 10 and 20 per cent of dogs were exposed to live bait.
She said businesses involved in the industry should be compensated and the industry should be phased out in the next 12 months to ensure the best outcomes possible for the people and animals involved.
Ms Bicknell is also opposed to the forced council merger of Orange, Blayney and Cabonne, saying some Queensland councils that were forced to merge had rates go up but services go down.