Jobs promised by man who helped get rid of 14,000
THE state's northern regions have received the cold shoulder during the first day of the Liberal National Party's election campaign, with the party prioritising its threatened candidates in the south-east corner.
While Opposition Leader Tim Nicholls swept through Springwood and the Lockyer Valley visiting small businesses, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk journeyed to the Whitsundays before bunkering down in Townsville overnight.
The LNP is fighting to maintain or win a number of marginal seats across the regions, including Pumicestone and many further north.
The Opposition's new 10-year economic policy promises to create 500,000 jobs across the state while increasing the threshold for payroll tax for small and medium businesses by $25,000.
The party says the plan would let more than 14,000 businesses "grow" without being hit with greater tax bills.
Mr Nicholls dismissed claims it was a gamble traipsing across the south-east corner before heading north.
"I think I'm here in effectively a regional seat outside of Brisbane," he said.
"This is a rural seat (Lockyer Valley) ... This is a seat that's an important part of Queensland."
Mr Nicholls said he was looking forward to spending "plenty of time" in regional Queensland during the campaign.
"We have announced $500million for Royalties for the Regions," he said. "We'll be there (the regions) with bells on."
Mr Nicholls was quiet on how the plan would funnel jobs into regions with high unemployment rates, instead diverting attention to announcements to be made later in the campaign.
Employment Minister Grace Grace said the jobs announcement was filled with hollow promises, arguing the LNP left Labor a 6.6 per cent unemployment rate in 2015.
"If we recall, he (Nicholls) promised no one had anything to fear before he got elected into the treasurer's position and in his first speech sacked 14,000 workers," she said.
"Labor has created 122,500 jobs since being elected.
"I think 500,000 is a promise that Tim Nicholls broke when he said no one had anything to fear."
Ms Grace said only Labor had a plan to continue on an employment path.
The LNP is expected to continue its south-east corner blitz today.