Archive, Industry News

Koutsantonis gains SA transport portfolio

Minister vaults into senior job and over troubled past while gaining Housing and Urban Development

January 22, 2013

Tom Koutsantonis is South Australia’s new Transport and Infrastructure Minister after the portfolios were vacated by long-term predecessor Pat Conlon.

Following Premier Jay Weatherill’s ministerial reshuffle, Koutsantonis also gains Housing and Urban Development and retains Mineral Resources and Energy but loses Manufacturing, Innovation and Trade and Small Business to Tom Kenyon.

The move comes almost four years after he was forced to give up the Road Safety portfolio and issue an apology when his bad driving record came to light.

The record reportedly
included 30 offences totalling about $10,000 in fines from 1994.

He had held the post for about seven weeks.

That would now appear to be forgiven, with Weatherill saying the minister’s “energy and drive and the success he has had in his current portfolios make him an ideal choice to take on the important Transport and Infrastructure portfolio”.

Despite limited time with Road Safety responsibilities, Koutsantonis has had recent involvement in transport infrastructure issues due to his Mineral Resources and Energy responsibilities.

In December, he released State Government’s response to the Resources and Energy Sector Infrastructure Council (RESIC) recommendations arising from the 2011 Infrastructure Demand Study (IDS), which, he says, it “broadly” endorsed.

He will cover one of those in his new portfolio, as the Department for Planning, Transport and Infrastructure is leading preparation of three Regional Mining and Infrastructure Plans that will consider the corridor and utility hub concept and investigate the need for and location of capsize ports.

The three ports’ needs include “appropriate rail and road infrastructure”, according to the Government’s ‘directions statement’.

“This integrated infrastructure planning will encompass transport, logistics and utilities which are critical to the growth of the minerals and energy sector and the health of our regional communities,” it continues.

A year ago, he announced an upgrade of the Stuart Highway to support the Olympic Dam project.

Chloe Fox retains Transport Services, the post she gained in 2011 and which covers public transport, but will also assist the Premier on the Arts.

Bookmark and Share

Previous ArticleNext Article
  1. Australian Truck Radio Listen Live
Send this to a friend