Updated

Nicola Centofanti takes primary industries in new Liberal front bench

Updated April 21 2022 - 7:35am, first published 4:10am
Leader of the opposition David Speirs with Liberal Legislative Council leader and spokesperson for Primary Industries Nicola Centofanti.

The new-look SA Liberals shadow cabinet has been announced, with Riverland MLC, former rural veterinarian and leader of the Liberals in the legislative council Nicola Centofanti taking on the primary industries portfolio.

Ms Centofanti will also have the regional SA, water resources and River Murray portfolios.

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She said she was "proud" to take on these key portfolios.

"I am a country veterinarian with a horticultural background and the River Murray is my home," she said.

"I'm passionate about our regions and improving economic and social outcomes for our regional communities through job creation, investment opportunities and improved infrastructure and services.

"Our primary industries and agribusiness sector is critical to our state's economy, it is our largest exporter and generates state-wide employment.

"We must ensure the industry is protected now and well into the future."

Ms Centofanti said responsible management of water resources was also critical to a sustainable future.

"Having lived on the River Murray for most of my life, I understand the importance of this and also of ensuring the delivery of water recovery is achieved through initiatives that have neutral socio-economic outcomes for our river communities," she said.

"I am grateful for this opportunity to serve our regions and this state.

"I look forward to continuing to consult with industry bodies, stakeholder groups and regional communities to develop a set of policies that really speak to the heart of regional SA."

There are a number of first-time MPs in the front bench, with new Member for Schubert, and former Liberal staffer Ashton Hurn taking on Health, while Flinders MP and former Local Government Association president Sam Telfer taking on the local government, regional population growth and regional planning responsibilities.

Some former MPs have also made their way back into portfolios.

Our primary industries and agribusiness sector is critical to our state's economy, it is our largest exporter and generates state-wide employment.

- NICOLA CENTOFANTI

Member for Chaffey Tim Whetstone and Hammond MP Adrian Pederick, who stood down during their ministry roles due to an investigation into parliamentary allowances, have been handed new portfolios.

Mr Whetstone will take on police and community safety, road safety, corrections, and mental health and suicide prevention.

Mr Pederick had veterans affairs, emergency services and regional roads.

Opposition leader David Speirs will retain his environment portfolio, alongside small and family business, public service and disability.

Deputy leader John Gardner will also keep education, training and skills, as well as arts and festivals.

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MLC Jing Lee will have multicultural SA, communities, tourism and hospitality.

Members of the new-look Liberal opposition cabinet. Photo: LIBERALS SA

Michelle Lensink keeps social and community housing, housing affordability and urban development, women and planning.

The energy and net zero, mining and defence and space industries portfolios go to Stephen Patterson.

Matt Cowdrey takes on treasury.

Vincent Tarzia has infrastructure and transport, and sport, recreation and racing.

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There will also be a focus on regional health services, with new Mid North-based MLC Penny Pratt taking on that, alongside ageing and preventative health and wellbeing.

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Shadow Attorney-General will be Josh Teague, who also takes on Aboriginal affairs, child protection and the prevention of family and domestic violence.

Heidi Girolamo will have finance, trade and investment, and the circular economy.

South East MP Nick McBride, who stood for the leadership vote on Tuesday, will be shadow parliamentary secretary for regional engagement, with Laura Curran shadow parliamentary secretary to the Mr Teague.

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Dennis Hood is Shadow cabinet secretary.

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