Toby George is more than a qualified project manager and contract administrator — he’s passionate about business investment and growing the Northern Territory again, like when he was growing up.
He says his roles in the public and private sector and infrastructure projects across the Territory and Kimberley over the past 17 years make him qualified to develop suitable solutions for getting the NT’s economy moving. “I’ve supported companies in navigating the maze of Government regulations required for investing in the Territory. I know what needs to change – and it’s not the attitudes of the business sector,” says Toby. “People are lining up to put money into our economy – but with so much political indecision and uncertainty investors turn away, or it leads to compromises that fail to recognise the full potential of what’s on offer.”
With more than $20 billion in Defence spending committed in the NT over the next 20 years, making sure that NT businesses are the first through the door in bidding for contracts is something that Toby believes is vital. “For my children and everyone else to have a future here, we need to learn from past mistakes.
“INPEX was great, but our failure to capture it properly has put us here – with falling GDP, falling property prices and families leaving to seek out opportunities elsewhere.” Toby, who was born in Royal Darwin Hospital 39 years ago, is the CLP candidate for Port Darwin in the Territory’s election on 22 August.
He has worked in Canberra for the team responsible for ensuring that John Howard’s commitment to reporting on the flow of carbon through Australia’s landscape was fulfilled. “An experience that exposed me to the machinations of the Federal Government.” Over the past three years in Katherine, he’s overseen the delivery of the largest Defence spend on infrastructure since the Second World War. “My heart is in the Territory; it always has been and always will be — it is my home. “My family support me 100 per cent on this endeavour.
It’s critical, particularly if one aspires to be in politics for the long haul.” He says the Territory in the eighties was a wonderful place to grow up. “It’s the greatest place on earth to raise a family. It gave me a sense of adventure, appreciation for the environment and a resilient but relaxed and friendly approach to life.
“That’s why I decided it was time to stand up and contribute further. With my voice in a strong CLP Government, Terrritorans can be assured, we will improve the state of the Territory economy, create job opportunities and get the Budget back on track.” TQ