Ludwig says governments hold key to stopping FIFO
STATE and Federal governments hold the key to stopping mining companies sourcing fly-in fly-out workers from the south-east corner.
That was Livingstone Mayor Bill Ludwig's stern message to the resources and infrastructure committee that will advise the State Government on how best to address the FIFO issues affecting regional Queensland communities.
He and Capricorn Enterprise chief executive Mary Carroll on Firday delivered their concerns to the Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources Committee - made up of several Central Queensland MPs - at the Travelodge Hotel Rockhampton.
Those communities included places like Moranbah, Blackwater, Emerald, Rockhampton, Banana and Livingstone shires, plus other regions which Cr Ludwig claimed were suffering due to the outsourcing of mine workers from places like Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast.
Cr Ludwig and Ms Carroll, in their address to the committee, agreed the State and Federal governments needed to look at supporting regional Queensland communities through funding for things like infrastructure projects.
"These infrastructure projects will attract mine workers and their families to our region and will drive forward the wellbeing of our economy," Cr Ludwig said.
"The State Government needs to ensure FIFO issues are addressed because the region is being discriminated by it."
That was just one of a "suite" of incentives Cr Ludwig suggested would help the region's FIFO concerns.
Another suggestion he made was a "legislative measure" by the State Government.
He told the committee his push was one that would benefit all communities of Central Queensland, not just Livingstone and Rockhampton.
Cr Ludwig made that clear when committee member Lachlan Millar, the MP for Gregory, challenged him, claiming that the need to source mine workers from places like Yeppoon and Rockhampton was furthermore creating missed job opportunities for workers in places like Blackwater and Emerald.
Again, Cr Ludwig said the State and Federal governments would need to address that.
Ms Carroll revealed that in the December 2014 quarter, Livingstone's unemployment rate was 5%.
She also revealed that Rockhampton's unemployment rate, for the same quarter, was 6.8%.