NSW PLANNING MINISTER TO TAKE TOP TRANSPORT ROLE

By: Fabian Cotter, Photography by: courtesy NSW State Government


FOLLOWING a whirlwind week of dramatic changes in NSW state Liberal Party politics, Planning Minister Rob Stokes is set to become the Minister for Transport, according to new NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet.

NSW PLANNING MINISTER TO TAKE TOP TRANSPORT ROLE
Minister Stokes was happy to take on the Transport portfolio, said new NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet.

After Mr Stokes’s challenge for the party leadership only yesterday in a ballot at NSW Parliament House – where Mr Perrottet defeated him with 39-5 votes – the new Premier of NSW says Minister Stokes was happy to take on the Transport portfolio, confirming he thought he would be ideal for the job given his 10 years of ministerial experience.

"When I called him this morning, he was very happy to take it on and I think balancing both planning, transport, and infrastructure makes perfect sense," Premier Perrottet informed reporters today.

According to independent national newswire AAP, he says the largest component of infrastructure remained in transport, a portfolio soon to be available after Minister Andrew Constance announced he was entering federal politics instead.

"So I think he [Stokes] will play a key role and is a perfect person for the job," Premier Perrottet said.

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Earlier today, NSW Regional Transport Minister Paul Toole was sworn in as NSW Deputy Premier - following Mr Barilaro’s resignation on Monday amidst the fallout of former premier Gladys Brejiklian’s resignation.

Mr Toole pledged to restore "business as usual" in the state’s regions after being emphatically elected as the new Nationals leader, aap reports.

Mr Toole - also the MP for Bathurst and outgoing deputy Nationals leader - defeated Water, Property and Housing Minister Melinda Pavey 15-3 in a Nationals leadership ballot, it adds.

"I want to make sure we get back to work and it’s business as usual because the people of this state have been doing it tough now for a number of years," Deputy Premier Toole explained.

"What’s important here is that we actually get on with the job."

Current Minister for Mental Health and upper house MP Bronnie Taylor will serve as the new Nationals Deputy Leader, it was confirmed.

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