News

Major job losses Tarong Power Station job cuts

Tarong Energy
Tarong Energy contributed

DARK clouds were fitting yesterday as Tarong Power Station announced the closure of two of its generating units.

A local councillor said the closure would cost the South Burnett about $10 million each year.

There will be up to 64 voluntary redundancies from the power station, a Stanwell Corporation Limited senior management team member told staff yesterday.

Tarong Power Station site manager Dennis Franklin said the decision would also affect the operations and workforce of the adjacent Meandu Mine. A further 40 jobs will be lost from that mine.

The announcement has angered South Burnett councillor Barry Green who said any downgrading in operations would have a detrimental effect on the community, both economically and socially.

"It's not just the loss of these jobs," he said. "In Nanango, motels and pubs depend on the big shutdowns (overhauls) they have."

The Stanwell spokesman said the overhauls and mini-overhauls would continue, but not for units two and four at the power station.

Cr Green said he was also concerned about the major loss of income to the region. "The wage bill per week out of the community will be about $200,000," he said.

"(That is) $10 million per year not turned around in the South Burnett region."

The Electrical Trades Union also slammed the decision to cut jobs, warning of upward pressure on electricity prices and an increasing likelihood of blackouts.

ETU state secretary Peter Simpson said the scale of the job losses would come as a shock to many workers.

"Taking 64 mostly skilled workers (engineering, maintenance and production) out of this community will undoubtedly lead to hardship. Our blokes on the ground out there are already getting calls from members saying if they lose their job they will be gone from the area," Mr Simpson said.

"Most of these workers have families that use the local schools, hospitals and shops and this is a huge blow for the South Burnett. There is a strong feeling that (this move) is the company clearing the decks ready for a possible privatisation."

Tarong Power Station site manager Dennis Franklin said the station intended to continue contributing to the local community "for the long term".

"Whilst there are some impacts as a result of the decision, there will be many long-term benefits as the power station and mine will be well-positioned to continue to be a more viable operation well into the future," Mr Franklin said.

"We are consulting with our employees, unions and suppliers regarding the preliminary decision to restructure our workforce at TPS."

Mr Franklin said while two units would be placed in cold storage, there would still be plenty of activity at the power station and mine.

"We are currently under way on the Unit 1 overhaul, which will result in more than $1 million being pumped into the local economy," he said.

"Additionally, next year we have the Meandu Mine dragline overhaul, which will bring up to 250 contractors to the region.

"We will still need to access coal from Meandu Mine to fuel the three generating units that will remain in service."

Member for Nanango Deb Frecklington met with Stanwell Corporation executives on Wednesday to discuss plans to place the two units in cold storage.

"I made it abundantly clear just how disappointed I am by Stanwell's decision to reduce its workforce," Ms Frecklington said.

"Stanwell has assured me electricity supply in the South Burnett will not be affected."

 

Have you lost your job? What will this mean for the region? Tell us what you think at editorial@southburnetttimes.com .au.

South Burnett

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Man, 32, killed after car and truck crash head-on

Two car collision south of Nanango. Sunday, December 4 2016.

Crash occurred on the outskirts of Nanango

STORM: Homes still without power, lightning starts fires

A high voltage incident has caused widespread power outages in Gympie and surrounds.

Unknown when the power will be restored

Two injured in motorcycle crash in South Burnett

Emergency Services, Ambulance, QAS,  Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle

Two injured, one rushed to hospital after bike crash.

Local Partners

Crusaders dominate RSL Services in heated match

KINGAROY RSL Services and the Murgon Crusaders went head to head at the weekend, but Services proved no match for the Murgon players in the end.

Hot act to wow crowds at the Murgon Christmas Fair

ON FIRE: Reece Dunn from Dragon Flow will light your imagination at the Murgon Christmas Fair.

Check out the fire dancing at the Murgon Christmas Fair.

This man helped start the Murgon Christmas Fair

John Robinson was one of the original committee members who put together the Murgon Christmas Fair 23 years ago.

John Robinson, along with a group of friends, started the fair.

All the info you need for the Murgon Christmas Fair

There will be plenty of rides at the Murgon Christmas Fair on Friday, December 9.

Be sure to get along to the Murgon Christmas Fair next week.

Seacrest: Things are "going better" for Kim and Kanye

Ryan Seacrest says things are "going better now" for Kanye West

Jonah Hill involved in a car accident

Jonah Hill was involved in a car crash on Saturday

Katie Holmes' empowering directorial debut

Katie Holmes

KATIE Holmes as made her directorial debut

Jennifer Lawrence gives keys to new partner

Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence

Oscar winner settling down with new partner

Rogue One star proud to lead new Star Wars film

Felicity Jones leads the new Star Wars film

Star Wars lead proud to be in front in sci-fi

What's on the small screen this week

Ernie Dingo stars in the TV series Going Places with Ernie Dingo.

ERNIE Dingo stars in a new travel series and Seven airs the AACTAs.

Prices jump in trio of mining towns

THE boost in coal prices in the past six months has triggered a house price jump in at least three mining towns in Central Queensland.

Boost in coal prices triggers a market turnaround

INSIDE STORY: Disused pipeline stops hundreds from building

TRAIL OF TEARS: Route of the disused Santos oil pipeline which is stopping hundreds of Ipswich residents from building.

Santos responds but Tully says easements issue must be addressed

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!