Shire stands up for workers based here

Tristan WheelerManjimup-Bridgetown Times
The Talison Mine expansion is due to bring additional jobs to the region.Picture: Tari Jeffers
Camera IconThe Talison Mine expansion is due to bring additional jobs to the region.Picture: Tari Jeffers Credit: Tari Jeffers/Manjimup-Bridgetown Times

State and local governments have differing ideas about the source of labour for the Talison Mine expansion at Greenbushes.

With the staged retirement of Collie’s Muja Power Station’s C units due in 2022, State Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan has encouraged Talison to consider employing Collie workers.

“Our Government is unashamed of our support for Collie as the town goes through its economic transition to a lower-emissions future,” she said.

“The Greenbushes mine expansion is set to create hundreds of new jobs in the South West and we want Collie workers to be in the mix, along with workers from Bridgetown, Greenbushes and other local communities.”

Bridgetown-Greenbushes Shire Council president John Nicholas said he would prefer the workforce at Talison to be a residential workforce.

“We want a residential workforce that adds to our local economy, adds to the development of the community, ensures that small business can survive, because like small business everywhere, our small business is struggling as well.

“Just imposing on the employer to take them, so there is a saviour of Collie, is not what we are about. We sympathise with what is happening in Collie, but we also want to protect our own environment.

“Bridgetown and the shires that surround us, we believe we deserve some of the spin-off of the economic development that will come out of this Talison Mine expansion.”

Despite this, Cr Nicholas would be happy for workers from Collie to relocate to Bridgetown.

“I’d be quite happy for people in Collie to move into the Shire of Bridgetown-Greenbushes if that is their choice, I’m not suggesting they couldn’t work at the mine, but what we want is a local residential workforce.

“We don’t want a transient workforce, that adds nothing to our economy. Those people come in, do their work and then leave and still do all of their shopping in Collie or wherever it happens to be.”

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