Queensland Premier Steven Miles (L) with his new ministers
Five new Queensland ministers have been sworn in at ceremony at Government House. Image by Darren England/AAP PHOTOS
  • politics

Housing portfolio grows in Queensland cabinet reshuffle

Keira Jenkins December 18, 2023

Queensland’s biggest cabinet shake-up in nine years has ushered in five new ministers as Labor sets its sights on election victory in 2024.

Steven Miles and Cameron Dick were on Friday elected as premier and deputy premier unanimously and unopposed at a Labor caucus meeting.

The reshuffle comes after a tearful Annastacia Palaszczuk stood down as premier after almost nine years in the top job.

She was Australia’s longest-serving sitting premier and the first woman to lead a party to three state election victories.

The fresh faces fall in behind Mr Miles as he seeks to convince voters he should be elected in his own right, and that Labor deserves another term.

Queensland Premier Steven Miles
 Steven Miles says he can lead Labor to a fourth consecutive election victory in Queensland. Image by Darren England/AAP PHOTOS 

“I wouldn’t have put my hand up for the role if I didn’t believe we could do it,” he said on Monday after his new cabinet was sworn in at Queensland’s Government House.

“The best chance we have of winning that election is by doing a good job each and every day and that’s our goal.”

Housing Minister Meaghan Scanlon is one of the biggest winners in the reshuffle, gaining extra portfolio responsibilities to tackle the housing crisis: planning, local government and public works.

“This expanded portfolio gives me the levers I need to make sure we deliver more homes for Queensland,” Ms Scanlon said.

Mr Miles’ previous portfolio of state development, infrastructure, planning and local government will be broken up to create the housing super-portfolio.

“It’s a big job but I know she can do it,” he told reporters.

“It puts housing in one of the most senior roles in my government.”

Qld minister Lance McCallum
 Lance McCallum is the first Indigenous man to serve in the Queensland ministry. Image by Darren England/AAP PHOTOS 

Nikki Boyd will take on the fire, disaster recovery and corrective services portfolios.

Bart Mellish will replace Mark Bailey as transport minister after he stood aside.

Lance McCallum, the first Indigenous man elected to the Queensland ministry, will take on the employment, small business, training and skills development portfolios.

Charis Mullen has taken on child safety, seniors, disability services and multicultural arts.

Michael Healy will take over Stirling Hinchliffe’s tourism portfolio and will also be responsible for sport.

Mr Miles was sworn in as premier barely a week after Annastacia Palaszczuk’s shock resignation on October 10.

It marks the first time since 2005 that Queensland Labor has two men at the helm.

Other portfolio changes include Youth Justice Minister Di Farmer taking on education, while Police Minister Mark Ryan will add community safety to his responsibilities.

Meaghan Scanlon is taking on three new responsibilities to tackle the housing crisis.

Mr Miles said Energy Minister Mick De Brenni was best placed to take on the clean energy jobs portfolio.

“It’s a real passion of mine, using the clean energy resources our state has to protect existing industrial jobs in the regions and attract new industrial jobs to our regions,” Mr Miles said.

Ms Palaszczuk will leave her Inala seat by year’s end, prompting a by-election.