John Bowler

John Bowler

Former Minister for Local Government; Employment Protection; Racing and Gaming; Goldfields-Esperance and Great Southern

    Bowler provides company list

    15/11/2006 10:00 AM

    Resources Minister John Bowler said today that he was happy to list the companies which had approached his office and which he was aware had engaged the services of Julian Grill and Brian Burke as lobbyists.

    “Unlike the former member for Peel, I have made no attempt to conceal that I have had contact with Julian Grill and Brian Burke, to a lesser extent, on issues which relate to my portfolio,” Mr Bowler said.

    “As the Minister for Resources, it is my job to facilitate the major projects which underpin Western Australia’s prosperity and in the course of that job I am lobbied by hundreds of companies with thousands of issues.”

    The Minister said that to the best of his knowledge, he was aware that only 10 of those hundreds of companies had engaged the services of Mr Grill or Mr Burke as lobbyists.

    Those companies were:
    • Fortescue Metals Group;
    • Kimberley Diamonds;
    • Echelon Resources;
    • Murchison Metals;
    • Pacific Hydro;
    • Griffin Coal;
    • Precious Metals Australia;
    • Urban Pacific;
    • Croesus Mining; and
    • Manafield Holdings.
    “It is the nature of my portfolio that I am lobbied almost constantly by companies, many of which are represented by lobbyists,” Mr Bowler said.

    “At no stage has lobbying by anyone resulted in favours or special treatment.

    “I listen to many different views, but I always act without fear or favour and in the best interests of the State.”

    The Minister said he had made decisions in six of the cases where he was aware companies had engaged Mr Grill or Mr Burke.

    “I believe three of those companies would be happy with the decisions made, the other three would be unhappy,” he said.

    “This is the nature of the decisions I am required to make in my portfolio.

    “In relation to Kimberley Diamonds, I refused a request to bring forward an already announced royalty relief.

    “A request by Echelon Resources that I not give my consent to a general lease was also refused.

    “In the case of Precious Metals Australia, I have advised the company of my intention to deny them tenure over BHP Billition’s Yeleerie State Agreement, despite PMA’s objections.”

    Mr Bowler said there was strong justification where he had made a decision in favour of the following three companies.

    “In relation to Griffin Coal, my determination of the appeals in relation to Bluewaters 2 while Acting Environment Minister, was consistent with the determination made in respect to Bluewaters 1 and was announced by media statement at the time,” he said.

    “Following a recommendation from my department, I approved a royalty deferral for Croesus Mining’s Norseman operations which was experiencing financial difficulties.

    “It was the main employer in the town, but unfortunately still went into administration.

    “In relation to Urban Pacific, a mineral sands tenement over land at Whitby Falls was preventing the company’s plans for a residential housing development.

    “I requested that my department remove its objection so much-needed land could be released for housing.

    “This decision was consistent with Labor’s long-standing opposition to minerals sands mining at Whitby Falls.

    “Additionally, the mining company which previously held tenure over the land had already sold it to a property developer, Urban Pacific, not to another mining company.

    “In the case of the four remaining companies, the issues before Government are either ongoing or have not required any action.”

    Minister's office: 9222 9699