Government of Queensland

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Coat of arms of the Queensland Government

The Government of Queensland (usually known as the Queensland Government) is the government of the Australian state of Queensland. It is established by the Constitution of Queensland, and its relationship with the Commonwealth is regulated by the Constitution of Australia.

The Government of Queensland operates under the Westminster system, a form of parliamentary government based on the model of the United Kingdom. The Governor of Queensland, as the representative of the Monarch, holds nominal power, although in practice only performs ceremonial duties. The Parliament of Queensland holds legislative power, while executive power lies with the Premier and Cabinet, and judicial power is exercised by a system of courts and tribunals.

Legislature[edit]

Parliament House in Brisbane; the meeting place of the Parliament of Queensland

The Parliament of Queensland is the state's legislature. It consists of the Monarch (represented by the Governor), and a single chamber; the Legislative Assembly. Queensland is the only Australian state with a unicameral parliament after a second chamber, the Legislative Council, was abolished in 1922.

The Legislative Assembly has 89 members; one representing each electoral district in Queensland. Elections for the Legislative Assembly are held approximately every three years.

Executive[edit]

Cabinet[edit]

Main article: Cabinet of Queensland

The Cabinet of Queensland is the government's chief policy-making organ, and consists of the Premier and all ministers.

Departments[edit]

Following the 2015 Queensland state election which resulted in a change of Government, Labor Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced her ministry and machinery of government changes. The changes involved several changes to government departments.[1]

Department Responsibilities Minister/s
Department of the Premier and Cabinet Provides support and advice for the Premier and Cabinet and leads the public sector in delivering the government’s priorities.
  • The Hon. Annastacia Palaszczuk MP, Premier and Minister for the Arts
  • The Hon. Coralee O’Rourke MP, Minister for Disability Services and Minister for Seniors and Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland
  • The Hon. Stirling Hinchcliffe MP, Assistant Minister of State Assisting the Premier and Leader of the House
Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Supports the economic and social participation of culturally diverse communities across Queensland and provides whole-of-government leadership, coordination and monitoring in policy, program and service delivery for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders. The Hon. Curtis Pitt MP, Treasurer, Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
Department of Agriculture and Fisheries Responsible for the agriculture, fisheries and forestry industries, including the provision of agricultural research, development and extension for the management of biological, animal welfare and product integrity risks. The Hon. Bill Byrne MP, Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries and Minister for Sport and Racing
Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services Works to strengthen connections between individuals, families and communities by providing and investing in quality human services.
  • The Hon. Shannon Fentiman MP, Minister for Communities, Youth and Seniors, Minister for Child Safety and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
  • The Hon. Coralee O’Rourke MP, Minister for Disability Services and Minister for Seniors and Minister Assisting the Premier on North Queensland
Department of Education and Training Delivers world-class education and training services and ensures that Queensland’s education and training systems are aligned to the state’s employment, skills and economic priorities.
  • The Hon. Kate Jones MP, Minister for Education and Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games
  • The Hon. Yvette D’Ath MP, Attorney-General, Minister for Justice and Minister for Training and Skills
Department of Energy and Water Supply Delivers innovative policy, planning and regulatory solutions in partnership with stakeholders to support cost-effective, safe, secure and reliable energy and water supplies. The Hon. Mark Bailey MP, Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy and Water Supply
Department of Environment and Heritage Protection Supports the sustainable, long-term economic development of Queensland by administering a range of environmental regulations and laws and ensuring compliance with them. The department is also responsible for identifying and conserving the state’s built heritage places. The Hon. Steven Miles MP, Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection and Minister for National Parks and the Great Barrier Reef
Queensland Health Provides leadership and direction for the health sector, and creates an environment that encourages innovation and improvement in the delivery of health services. The Hon. Cameron Dick MP, Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services
Department of Housing and Public Works Delivers a range of housing, building and procurement services for Queenslanders, as well as delivering services to government agencies in the areas of construction, asset and facilities management, procurement and fleet management. The Hon. Leeanne Enoch MP, Minister for Housing and Public Works and Minister for Science and Innovation
Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Delivers infrastructure and planning services to communities across Queensland. Supports strong, sustainable and resilient local governments, along with community planning, asset management and financial management to deliver improved capability. The Hon. Jackie Trad MP, Deputy Premier, Minister for Transport, Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Trade
Department of Justice and Attorney-General Responsible for administering justice in Queensland and delivers services to ensure safe, fair and productive work environments which contribute to the social and economic wellbeing of Queenslanders.
  • The Hon. Yvette D’Ath MP, Attorney-General, Minister for Justice and Minister for Training and Skills
  • The Hon. Jo-Ann Miller MP, Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services and Minister for Corrective Services
Department of National Parks, Sport and Racing Encourages active lifestyles by providing recreational and sporting opportunities through the management of national parks and marine protected areas, as well as the management of the racing industry.
  • The Hon. Bill Byrne MP, Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries and Minister for Sport and Racing
  • The Hon. Steven Miles MP, Minister for Environment and Heritage Protection and Minister for National Parks and the Great Barrier Reef
Department of Natural Resources and Mines Enables the productive and responsible use of Queensland’s natural resources—water, land, mineral and energy resources—and provides a modernised natural resources business that will power-up regional Queensland. The Hon. Anthony Lynham MP, Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
Queensland Police Service and Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Responsible for the police service, fire and rescue service, and disaster management. The Hon. Jo-Ann Miller MP, Minister for Police, Fire and Emergency Services and Minister for Corrective Services
Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation Works closely with all agencies to drive the government’s priorities in research, science, innovation, technology, intellectual property, service delivery. The Hon. Leeanne Enoch MP, Minister for Housing and Public Works and Minister for Science and Innovation
Department of State Development Drives the economic development of Queensland by delivering on major projects and infrastructure, economic development. The Hon. Anthony Lynham MP, Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
Department of Transport and Main Roads Works to implement the planning, management and deliverance of Queensland’s integrated transport environment in order to achieve sustainable transport solutions for road, rail, air and sea.
  • The Hon. Jackie Trad MP, Deputy Premier, Minister for Transport, Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister for Trade
  • The Hon. Mark Bailey MP, Minister for Main Roads, Road Safety and Ports and Minister for Energy and Water Supply
Queensland Treasury Responsible for providing economic and financial advice to the government, as well as services to the community, to enhance the state’s financial position and economic performance. The Hon. Curtis Pitt MP, Treasurer, Minister for Employment and Industrial Relations and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
Department of Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games The department has four key areas working to deliver outcomes for Queensland—Tourism Division, Small Business Division, Business Online Solutions, and the Office of Commonwealth Games Coordination. The Hon. Kate Jones MP, Minister for Education and Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games

Some departments have more than one Minister, and most Ministers have more than one portfolio. The portfolios bolded are relevant to the listed departments.

Departments prior to February 2015 changes

Agencies[edit]

Government owned corporations[edit]

The government is responsible for a number of corporations, of which the responsible minister typically holds a 100% ownership stake in. These include:[2]

In 2006, then-Premier Peter Beattie privatised a number of government owned electricity retailers.[3]

On June 2, 2009 the government announced the 'Renewing Queensland Plan' that would sell state-owned railway, port and forestry assets to raise $15 billion, and avoid a further $12 billion required in future capital investment.[4][5] On 18 May 2010, Queensland Forestry Plantations was the first commercial business to be sold.

Judiciary[edit]

Queen Elizabeth II Courts of Law in Brisbane in which the Supreme Court of Queensland and District Court of Queensland sit

The judiciary of Queensland consists of the Magistrates Court, the District Court, and the Supreme Court, as well as a number of smaller courts and tribunals. The Chief Justice of Queensland is the state's most senior judicial officer.

Magistrates Court[edit]

The Magistrates Court is the lowest tier of the judicial hierarchy of Queensland.[6] The court's criminal jurisdiction covers summary offences, and indictable offences which may be heard summarily, but all criminal proceedings in Queensland begin in the Magistrates Court, even if they are not within this jurisdiction.[7] For charges beyond its jurisdiction, the court conducts committal hearings in which the presiding magistrate decides, based on the strength of the evidence, whether to refer the matter to a higher court or dismiss it.[7] The court's civil jurisdiction covers matters in which the amount in dispute is less than or equal to $150,000.[7] Appeals against decisions by the Magistrates Court are heard by the District Court.[7]

District Court[edit]

The District Court is the middle tier of the judicial hierarchy of Queensland.[8] The court has jurisdiction to hear all appeals from decisions made in the Magistrates Court.[8] Its criminal jurisdiction covers serious indictable offences (such as armed robbery, rape, and dangerous driving).[8] The court's civil jurisdiction covers matters in which the amount in dispute is more than $150,000 but less than or equal to $750,000.[8] Appeals against decisions by the District Court are heard by the Court of Appeal, a division of the Supreme Court.[8]

Supreme Court[edit]

The Supreme Court is the highest tier of the judicial hierarchy Queensland.[9] The court has two divisions; the Trial Division and the Court of Appeal. The Trial Division's jurisdiction covers serious criminal offences (including murder and manslaughter), and civil matters involving claims of more than $750,000. The Court of Appeal's jurisdiction allows it to hear cases on appeal from the Trial Division, the District Court, and a number of other judicial tribunals in Queensland.[9] Appeals against decisions by the Court of Appeal are heard by the High Court of Australia.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Queensland Public Service Commission - A summary of changes to departments of government". The State of Queensland. Retrieved 19 February 2015. 
  2. ^ "Government owned corporations: Queensland Government". The State of Queensland. Retrieved 13 January 2010. 
  3. ^ Peter Beattie (2 April 2011). "Bligh, Newman vie for a changed Queensland". The Australian (News Limited). Retrieved 17 February 2012. 
  4. ^ Marissa Calligeros (2 June 2009). "Queensland asset sales to reap $15 billion". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 20 June 2010. 
  5. ^ "Queensland assets sale". www.qld.gov.au. Retrieved 20 June 2010. 
  6. ^ Department of Justice and Attorney-General (Queensland) (2012). "Magistrates Court". Retrieved 14 March 2014. 
  7. ^ a b c d Department of Justice and Attorney-General (Queensland) (2010). "Magistrates Court of Queensland". Retrieved 14 March 2014. 
  8. ^ a b c d e Department of Justice and Attorney-General (Queensland) (2010). "The District Court of Queensland". Retrieved 14 March 2014. 
  9. ^ a b Department of Justice and Attorney-General (Queensland). "Supreme Court". Retrieved 14 March 2014. 

External links[edit]