Western Australia’s new Labor-dominated parliament will commence on April 29, with Premier Mark McGowan promising to deliver an “ambitious and wide-ranging” agenda.
Thirteen new Labor lower house MPs will be sworn in at a joint sitting of the 41st parliament to be opened by Governor Kim Beazley.
Michelle Roberts will be formally elected as WA’s first female Legislative Assembly speaker.
Parliament will sit for 18 weeks in 2021 with Labor set to hold 53 out of 59 lower house seats after claiming a landslide victory at last month’s election.
Labor will also hold a majority in the Legislative Council for the first time.
The decimated Liberals have been reduced to just two lower house MPs, with the Nationals set to claim official opposition status.
Mr McGowan has flagged that extending the COVID-19 state of emergency laws will be his first priority.
Other targets include reappointing John McKechnie as the state’s corruption watchdog, clamping down on bikies and strengthening laws to tackle dangerous sex offenders.
Electoral reforms appear certain to also be pursued after micro party candidates managed to claim three upper house seats.
Daylight Saving Party candidate Wilson Tucker was elected in the Mining and Pastoral region despite polling just 98 votes.
His victory was made possible by complex preference deals which have also catapulted Legalise Cannabis WA candidates to victories in the South West and East Metro regions.
The Greens were reduced from four upper house MPs to one despite comfortably outpolling the Legalise Cannabis party.
Electoral reforms are likely to include a tightening of the rules around political donations.
The McGowan government also has a number of bills it will need to reintroduce after missing the deadline to get them passed in the last parliament.
Among the most contentious is its new Aboriginal cultural heritage legislation which has been criticised by Indigenous groups and heritage professionals.
“My government took an ambitious and wide-ranging legislative agenda to the last election, and we look forward to delivering it,” Mr McGowan said on Friday.
“We have a lot of work to do and the 18 weeks allocated this year, which is more than what occurred in 2017, reflects that.
“We will undertake reform to disrupt and eliminate bikie networks and make our communities safer.”
A date for the swearing in of new upper house members is yet to be announced.