Peter Jones (Australian politician)

Peter Vernon Jones AM (28 January 1933 – 16 January 2017) was an Australian politician who served as a member of the Legislative Assembly of Western Australia from 1974 to 1986, representing the seat of Narrogin. He was a minister in the governments of Charles Court and Ray O'Connor.


Peter Jones

Deputy Leader of the
National Country Party (WA)
In office
18 May 1975 – 30 January 1985
LeaderDick Old
Preceded byMatt Stephens
Succeeded byMatt Stephens
Member of the Legislative Assembly
of Western Australia
In office
30 March 1974 – 8 February 1986
Preceded byWilliam Manning
Succeeded byCambell Nalder
ConstituencyNarrogin
Personal details
Born(1933-01-28)28 January 1933
Launceston, Tasmania, Australia
Died16 January 2017(2017-01-16) (aged 83)
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Political partyNational Country[a] (to 1985)
Liberal (from 1985)

Early lifeEdit

Jones was born in Launceston, Tasmania, the son of Annie May (née Simmons) and Harold Vernon Jones. He attended Launceston Church Grammar School, where his father was the headmaster. After leaving school, Jones farmed at Hagley. He moved to Western Australia in 1968 and subsequently farmed at Narrogin, on a property of 2,700 hectares (6,700 acres). From 1972 to 1974, Jones was a member of the state marketing board for barley.[1] He married Margaret Antonia Maslin in 1960, with whom he had three children.[1] His children were called Philippa, Andrew and Angus.

PoliticsEdit

A member of the National Country Party (NCP),[a] Jones entered parliament at the 1974 state election, replacing the retiring William Manning.[2] In May 1975, a split in the party saw Ray McPharlin replaced as leader by Dick Old, with Jones replacing Matt Stephens as deputy leader. He was subsequently appointed to the ministry, becoming Minister for Housing, Minister for Conservation and the Environment, and Minister for Fisheries and Wildlife.[1]

In a reshuffle after the 1977 state election, Jones was instead made Minister for Education, Minister for Cultural Affairs, and Minister for Recreation. A further reshuffle occurred after the 1980 election, and he became Minister for Resources Development, Minister for Mines, Minister for Fuel and Energy and Minister for Industrial Development and Commerce. In February 1981, Jones added another three portfolios, becoming Minister for Housing (for a second time), Minister for Regional Administration and the North-West, and Minister for Tourism. However, when Ray O'Connor replaced Charles Court as premier in January 1982, his workload was reduced to just three portfolios again – resources development, mines, and fuel and energy.[1] Jones exited the ministry when the Liberal–NCP government was defeated at the 1983 state election.[2]

In 1978, several National Country MPs had left the party to form a new group, the National Party. The NCP and the National Party merged in October 1984, under the name of the latter, although the parliamentary NCP was not formally dissolved until January 1985. Its three remaining members in the Legislative Assembly – Jones, Bert Crane, and Dick Old – refused to join the new unified party, instead joining the Liberal Party.[1] At the 1986 state election, Jones and Old were defeated by National Party, although Crane retained his seat as a Liberal.[2]

Later lifeEdit

After leaving parliament, Jones initially worked as a company executive, and also occupied several administrative positions in the Liberal Party, serving as state president from April 1989 to July 1991 and as a federal vice-president from July 1990 to October 1996. From 1995 to 2002, Jones chaired the Water Corporation, a WA state government agency. He then chaired Defence Housing Australia from 2003 to 2008.[1] Jones died in Perth in January 2017, aged 83.[3]

NotesEdit

  1. ^ a b The party was known as the National Alliance at the 1974 state election, a consequence of the merger of the former Country Party with the Democratic Labor Party.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c d e f Peter Vernon Jones – Biographical Register of Members of the Parliament of Western Australia. Retrieved 23 May 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Black, David; Prescott, Valerie (1997). Election statistics : Legislative Assembly of Western Australia, 1890-1996. Perth, [W.A.]: Western Australian Parliamentary History Project and Western Australian Electoral Commission. ISBN 0730984095.
  3. ^ "WA energy pioneer, Peter Jones, dies, aged 83", The West Australian, 17 January 2017. Retrieved 17 January 2017.
Parliament of Western Australia
Preceded by
William Manning
Member for Narrogin
1974–1986
Succeeded by
Cambell Nalder
Political offices
Preceded by
Des O'Neil
Ray O'Connor
Minister for Housing
1975–1977
1981–1982
Succeeded by
Andrew Mensaros
Ray Young
Preceded by
Matt Stephens
Minister for Conservation and the Environment
1975–1977
Succeeded by
Graham MacKinnon
Preceded by
Matt Stephens
Minister for Fisheries and Wildlife
1975–1977
Succeeded by
Graham MacKinnon
Preceded by
Graham MacKinnon
Minister for Education
1977–1980
Succeeded by
Bill Grayden
Preceded by
Graham MacKinnon
Minister for Cultural Affairs
1977–1980
Succeeded by
Bill Grayden
Preceded by
Graham MacKinnon
Minister for Recreation
1977–1980
Succeeded by
Bill Grayden
Preceded by
Andrew Mensaros
Minister for Resources Development
1980–1983
Succeeded by
Mal Bryce
Preceded by
Andrew Mensaros
Minister for Mines
1980–1983
Succeeded by
Peter Dowding
Preceded by
Andrew Mensaros
Minister for Fuel and Energy
1980–1983
Succeeded by
Peter Dowding
Preceded by
Andrew Mensaros
Minister for Industrial Development and Commerce
1980–1982
Succeeded by
Barry MacKinnon
Preceded by
Ray O'Connor
Minister for Regional Administration and the North-West
1981–1982
Succeeded by
Barry MacKinnon
Preceded by
Ray O'Connor
Minister for Tourism
1981–1982
Succeeded by
Barry MacKinnon