Livingstone Mayor Bill Ludwig, pictured with Tony Abbott during Beef Australia, met the Prime Minister in Canberra last week.
Livingstone Mayor Bill Ludwig, pictured with Tony Abbott during Beef Australia, met the Prime Minister in Canberra last week. Allan Reinikka Rokaabbott

$30 million cyclone recovery funding not enough

CATEGORY D funding of nearly $30 million for Central Queensland is a step in the right direction, but Livingstone Mayor Bill Ludwig says we need more after the destruction caused by Cyclone Marcia.

"It's certainly welcomed... but we could've done with twice the amount," Cr Ludwig said yesterday.

The Federal Government Category D cyclone recovery package was announced yesterday and will give a $27.75 million boost for the Rockhampton, Livingstone and Banana shires.

The announcement comes after Capricornia MP Michelle Landry and Flynn MP Ken O'Dowd had been lobbying behind closed doors in Canberra.

Rockhampton Mayor Margaret Strelow welcomed the news, and said she would be looking into more detail about what the funding would cover.

She said council had three applications under Category D for the Botanic Gardens, Kershaw Gardens and the region's creeks and waterways.

"It's very welcome news when we were looking at a difficult budget," Cr Strelow said.

Last week Cr Ludwig secured a meeting with Prime Minister Tony Abbott where he pushed the region's case for post-cyclone economic recovery funding.

"Obviously the Prime Minister took onboard the message that we were able to deliver on behalf of the region last week; we definitely needed that funding support sooner rather than later," Cr Ludwig said.

Twenty million of the funding is set for an infrastructure betterment fund to rebuild damaged local government assets to a more resilient standard.

Meanwhile, Cr Ludwig said this money would be focused towards projects like the Yeppoon foreshore and making sea walls more resilient.

"We're looking at places like Statue Bay where the roads have been undermined, we're looking to do a betterment program where we can make the area safer and not close it every time there's an event," Cr Ludwig said.

With more than $10 million in damages just in council assets in Livingstone, Cr Ludwig said they would be pushing for more money in the near future.

He said he was grateful for the funding and eager to see what they could achieve with it.

Cr Ludwig said more money would be needed to ensure iconic projects in Emu Park and the Yeppoon foreshore were developed, as they were key in giving the region a full economic recovery.

Despite disagreements with Ms Landry over the issue last week, Cr Strelow said she was "very, very grateful" for Ms Landry's support during the application process.

CAT D FUNDING PACKAGE

$20 million for an infrastructure betterment fund to rebuild damaged local government assets to a more resilient standard.

$6 million for the clean-up and restoration of national parks, beaches and recreational assets.

$1 million to assist councils in the worst affected areas with green waste clean-up and removal activities.

$750,000 to engage industry recovery officers to support cyclone-affected primary producers and small businesses.



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