GEOFF Provest is a man of many questions.
The National Party's Tweed MP has raised 411 questions in the New South Wales Legislative Assembly - ranging from budget funding to the number of firearm licences - since he first took office in 2007, more than any other state rep- resentative.
Mr Provest said it is all about keeping the Tweed's best interests alive in Parliament.
“Question time is a great communication tool. I use it to seek information from a variation of government departments,” Mr Provest said.
“I've asked questions on water licences, the RTA, and on the numbers of special-skills workers in the area.”
Mr Provest believes raising awareness for the Tweed in Sydney is also the best way to get a share in any funding.
“There are 93 other representatives from around the state trying to get money for hospitals and other projects. It's important to bring the Tweed to their attention,” he said.
Mr Provest said many of his questions originate from Tweed residents, community groups and reports.
“I've asked questions over a wide range of topics that affect different members of the community, from business, individuals, fishing groups; you name it,” he said.
“I encourage all people who are after information from Government departments to come forward and talk to me. I'm only too happy to help out.”
Members of the Legislative Assembly are allowed three questions every sitting.
Mr Provest said he always reaches the quota.
“In a week of sitting for Parliament I can have 12 questions in a week,” he said.
Mr Provest defended other MPs who do not ask many questions in Parliament.
“Some have different methods of getting information, like approaching a minister directly,” he said. “I like asking the questions because anyone can track the answers through the parliamentary website.
Lismore MP Thomas George, whose district includes Murwillumbah, has lodged 26 questions.
• What was the number of customers attended by the Tweed RTA Office?
• What is the number of under-age youth charged with using illicit drugs?
• What is/was the number of taxi licences in the Tweed electorate?
• What is the total number of licences granted for commercial spring water extraction in the electorate of Tweed?