Local boards appointed to run Qld ag colleges

Beef Central, 28/03/2013

The Longreach Pastoral College and the Emerald Agricultural College will return to a local board management system, following a long-running review into their future.

The two colleges were merged with other agricultural colleges at Burkdekin, Mareeba and Dalby to form the Australian Agricultural College Corporation by the Beattie Labor Government in 2005.

An audit by accountancy firm Ernst and Young, commissioned by the Newman LNP Government after it took power last year, revealed that the AACC had not operated at a profit since it was established, and was expected to post a $6.8 million loss last financial year.

Mr McVeigh announced this morning that the Longreach and Emerald agricultural campuses will return to a local board management system from May 1.

However he added that this would be a transitionary measure while while legislative changes were made to “ensure a more viable business model for the colleges.”

The new board members are:

Emerald Agricultural College: Mike McCosker (Chair), Wayne Reeves, Rebecca Murray, Christine Rolfe, George Bourne, Adele O’Connor and Tony Robinson.

Longreach Pastoral College: Donald Brown (Chair), Katrina Paine, Ian Walker, Ian Duncan, Ben Banks, Rosemary Champion and Richard Pietsch.

Member for Gregory, Vaughan Johnson, said the new boards will be responsible for setting the strategic direction for their respective colleges, ensuring alignment of training with production plans, marketing the colleges to achieve growth and ensuring that students learn the right skills.

“The future success of both colleges will require a team effort and the boards and colleges will need the full support of the agricultural industry,” Mr Johnson said. 

Mr McVeigh said this was "only the first in a series of changes" to strengthen the colleges.

He said further changes will be announced in the coming weeks and months.

“Agriculture is one of the four pillars of the Queensland economy and the Newman Government will deliver the best possible training outcomes in this area,” Mr McVeigh.

“The next major change will be to appoint a new director to each college. The new college directors will report directly to the local boards to ensure board recommendations are implemented and outcomes are being achieved.”



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