The decision by former Tasmanian Premier, David Bartlett, to quit as IT minister is a blow against the State’s NBN and tech industries, according to consumer action group, Digital Tasmania (DigiTas).
Bartlett will become the State’s attorney-general and minister for Justice after quitting as Premier and tech Minister. Infrastructure Minister, David O’Byrne, will add the Innovation, Science and Technology portfolio to his responsibilities.
DigiTas spokesperson, Andrew Connor, said Bartlett was the most tech-savvy member of the Tasmanian parliament and that his departure from tech was slightly surprising given his background in IT.
“It’s somewhat of a blow that his experience and background in the sector and in this ministry pushing for the NBN won’t continue,” he said. “It’s definitely going to take some time for (O’Byrne) to get up to speed on the sector.
“We hope the new guy puts emphasis into the NBN and it may match well with the new minister’s infrastructure responsibilities…often Ministers lack qualifications in their portfolios and rely on advisors to get them the best information for a decision.”
Connor said DigiTas was requesting a meeting with the new Minister and aimed to get one within the next two weeks.