Mark McGowan will allocate portfolios on Thursday. Photo: Attila Csaszar

MacTiernan bounces back

Wednesday, 15 March, 2017 - 14:06

ANALYSIS: Freshly recycled Labor MP Alannah MacTiernan has been fast tracked into Premier-elect Mark McGowan’s new cabinet, even though she will not formally start her term in the Legislative Council until mid-May.

Ms MacTiernan, who was infrastructure minister in the Gallop-Carpenter cabinets between 2001 and 2008, later served a term in federal parliament as the member for Perth.

Mr McGowan will not allocate portfolios for his new 17-member line up until tomorrow. There has been speculation that Ms MacTiernan will be receive the energy portfolio or the challenging role of overseeing diversification of the state’s economy.

Several members of Mr McGowan’s 20-member shadow cabinet have been given other roles, as the new frontbench is limited to 17 members.

They include Albany MP Peter Watson, who will be the new speaker of the Legislative Assembly, and Kate Doust, who has been earmarked for either president or deputy president of the Legislative Council.

The other shadow ministers to miss out are the former environment spokesman Chris Tallentire, who will be a parliamentary secretary, and Margaret Quirk, a minister in the Gallop and Carpenter governments, who will go to the backbench.

Frontbencher and AMWU official, Fran Logan, has been retained, despite being counselled in the last week of the campaign after video footage showed him warning a contractor upset over the threatened cancellation of the Roe 8 project.

Several former prominent union officials will also serve in the first McGowan ministry: Dave Kelly, a former secretary of United Voice; new government leader in the upper house and former industrial advocate Sue Ellery; and Amber-Jade Sanderson, also formerly of United Voice, who will cabinet secretary.

Frontbenchers tipped to retain their current portfolio areas include Ben Wyatt (Treasury) Rita Saffioti (transport), deputy premier Roger Cook (health), John Quigley (attorney-general), Paul Papalia (corrective services) and Ms Ellery (education).

The new line-up will be sworn in at Government House on Friday.


See below for the incoming state government’s list of ministers. 


Already appointed

  • Mark McGowan – premier
  • Roger Cook – deputy premier (previously shadow minister for health)
  • Sue Ellery – leader in the legislative council (previously shadow minister for education)
  • Stephen Dawson – deputy leader in the council (previously shadow minister for disability services, mental health and child protection


To be assigned

  • Michelle Roberts (previously shadow minister for police, road safety, crime prevention, and culture and the arts)
  • Alannah MacTiernan
  • Fran Logan (previously shadow minister for housing, local jobs, and training and workforce development)
  • David Templeton (previously shadow minister for local government, volunteering, and heritage)
  • John Quigley (previously shadow attorney general)
  • Mick Murray (previously shadow minister for regional roads, racing and gaming, and forestry)
  • Ben Wyatt (previously shadow minister for Aboriginal affairs)
  • Paul Papalia (previously shadow minister for corrective services, tourism, and defence issues)
  • Bill Johnston (previously shadow minister for state development, energy, mines and petroleum, and ports)
  • Rita Saffioti (previously shadow minister for planning, transport, infrastructure, and finance)
  • Peter Tinley (previously shadow minister for science, trade, and lands)
  • Simone McGurk (previously shadow minister for community services)
  • Dave Kelly (previously shadow minister for water, fisheries, and youth)



  • Chris Tallentire (previously shadow minister for environment)
  • Margaret Quirk (previously shadow minister for emergency services)
  • Peter Watson (previously shadow minister for sport and recreation)
  • Kate Doust (previously shadow minister for industrial relations, commerce, and small business)