Bill Johnston (politician)

Last updated

Bill Johnston

Member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly
for Cannington
Assumed office
6 September 2008
Personal details
William Joseph Johnston

(1962-08-11) 11 August 1962 (age 58)
Canberra, ACT, Australia
Political party Labor Party
Spouse(s) Kate Doust

William Joseph Johnston (born 11 August 1962) is an Australian politician. He has been a Labor Party member of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly since the 2008 state election, representing Cannington.

While still a student Johnston spent time abroad as an American Field Service exchange student to Bandung, Indonesia. He is married to Kate Doust, the member for the South Metropolitan Region.

Prior to entering Parliament, Johnston spent seven years as the state secretary of WA Labor and was a former senior official of the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association, the union representing retail and warehouse workers.

In the 2013 state election, Johnston was re-elected for a second term in office. In opposition, he was the shadow minister for State Development; Energy; Mines & Petroleum. [1] He was reelected again at the 2017 Western Australian state election.

McGowan Ministry

When Labor was elected to government in 2017, Johnston became Minister for Asian Engagement; Minister for Housing; Minister for Electoral Affairs; and Minister for Commerce and Industrial Relations. Five days after the cabinet was sworn in, he swapped the Housing portfolio with Peter Tinley, after Tinley resigned as Minister for Mines and Petroleum over a possible conflict of interest. [2]

On 13 December 2018 Johnston gained the Energy portfolio and relinquished Electoral Affairs, Commerce and Asian Engagement.

As Minister for Industrial Relations, Johnston introduced industrial manslaughter laws. These laws include a maximum penalty of between five and 20 years imprisonment for individuals, along with fines of up to $10 million for companies responsible for the death of a worker. [3]

In October 2020, Johnston and Premier Mark McGowan announced the Household Electricity Credit, a $600 credit applied to every household electricity account. The credit was funded by a settlement of the decades long Bell Group litigation. [4]

Also as Energy Minister, Johnston launched Western Australia's first Whole of System Plan, a long term plan for the South West Interconnected System electricity network. [5] He has also overseen reforms to solar buyback arrangements, [6] intended to support the stability of the electricity network as household solar generation increases.

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  1. Parliament of Western Australia (2013). "Mr William (Bill) Joseph Johnston MLA". Archived from the original on 13 September 2009. Retrieved 15 September 2009.
  2. "Mining, housing ministers swap jobs". PerthNow. 21 March 2017. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  3. "Almost three years after her son fell to his death, Regan Ballantine says his life has been 'given more meaning'". 22 October 2020. Retrieved 21 November 2020.
  4. "WA households get pre-Christmas boost with $600 power credit from Bell Group settlement". 4 October 2020. Retrieved 21 November 2020.
  5. "Renewable energy predicted to power 80 per cent of WA's biggest electricity network within two decades". 11 October 2020. Retrieved 21 November 2020.
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Western Australian Legislative Assembly
New seat Member for Cannington