Speaker Peter Wellington quizzed about bees, asbestos

LEAKY pools, asbestos, parliamentary security and MP's electoral office costs have dominated Peter Wellington's time before the Queensland budget estimates hearing.

The independent Nicklin MP was being questioned in his role as Speaker of the House alongside Parliamentary Clerk Neil Laurie. 

The Parliamentary Finance and Administration Committee heard the government had spent about $300,000 removing asbestos from level seven of the 40-year-old Parliamentary Annexe.

Mr Laurie said renovations to the building had been delayed due to wet weather and an unexpectedly high amount on asbestos.

"Quite frankly, there was just asbestos everywhere we went and turned over things," he said.

Mr Wellington said the aging building would continue to need work.

"We will work within the budget that we have as best we can," Mr Wellington said.

LNP leader and former state treasurer Tim Nicholls admitted treasurers were "notoriously tight with these things". 

Mr Wellington also announced hives of native bees would be located within the parliament's grounds.

Labor Bundamba MP Jo-Ann Miller also questioned Mr Wellington and Mr Laurie regarding if MPs have been paying cleaners award rates to clean electoral offices.

But Mr Laurie said no investigation into that issue had been undertaken as the cleaners were often contractors.

Budget estimates will continue in Parliament House in Brisbane for the next two weeks.


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