SUSSAN Ley will get down to the business of government straight away.
As assistant minister for education, the member for Farrer will receive her first departmental briefings today.
“I’ll be meeting with my senior Minister Christopher Pyne in the next couple of days and we had our first ministerial meeting in the cabinet room this afternoon,” she said yesterday.
“I think Tony Abbott is just going to be an excellent Prime Minister — very serious, very considered and really a great leader of I think an experienced team ready to work hard and fulfill the commitments we made during the election campaign.”
Ms Ley was sworn into her new role — she is part of a 42-member executive — by Governor-General Quentin Bryce in Canberra yesterday.
“It was a sombre but also a happy occasion,” she said.
“The responsibility of government is something that we don’t take lightly and so I think I felt that certain weight of responsibility.”
Ms Ley said she had family join her for the ceremony.
“It’s always nice to have the people who have supported you close to you,” she said.
It wasn’t the first swearing-in for Ms Ley, who served as a parliamentary secretary in 2004.
“I remembered that, having sat in that same room with John Howard as prime minister,” she said.
“It didn’t seem all that long ago.”
Ms Ley said her workload would be similar to her time in opposition, when she had three different areas of responsibility.
“I’m used to being busy and yes there is a great deal to do.”
Ms Ley said that was especially in her area of focus — childcare and early learning.
“We’ve got a productivity commission inquiry to kick off and I’ve got meetings to hold with my state and territory counterparts about making childcare more affordable,” she said.
“There’s a great deal to do.”