Royalty scheme welcomed
CAMPBELL Newman yesterday said an LNP government would spend royalties from the mining and resource sector on education, health, sporting facilities and roads in Queensland's regions.
Mr Newman has pledged to establish a Royalties for the Regions - a key part of which will be the LNP's $170 million over four years for the Resource Community Building Fund.
His commitment was welcomed by Capricorn Enterprises CEO Mary Carroll, while Rockhampton Regional Council Mayor Brad Carter said the Rockhampton region should get its "proportional entitlement" from the resources sector, according to LNP leader Campbell Newman.
Launching his Queensland election campaign, Mr Newman said the royalties program would ensure regions that hosted major resource developments received long-term mineral royalty benefits through "better planning and targeted infrastructure investment".
"Our resource community building fund will deliver better social infrastructure - like supplementary health and education facilities, community centres and sporting facilities - to improve liveability, provide a better lifestyle in resource regions for generations of Queenslanders to come," Mr Newman said.
The fund would kick off with $10 million to support "ready-to-go" projects and build to $100 million in four years, and finally $170 million.
"We will ensure that local councils and communities have strong contributions so that projects best match community needs and aspirations," he said.
Ms Carroll said CQ business and industry had been crying out for such a scheme and Rockhampton and the Capricorn Coast must be a beneficiary.
"With $3 billion per annum of royalties going to State revenue, nearly half of which is generated by CQ mines, the State government must fund our local projects," she said.
"Mr Newman also talks about improved liveability ... so we are keen for a commitment to our priority project lifestyle precincts such as the $30 million required for the Yeppoon foreshore redevelopment which is well past master planning stage."
Meanwhile, CQUniversity Professor in Regional Development Economics John Rolfe said there were a lot of benefits in a royalties scheme as long as the money was spent wisely.
He said Central Queensland should do well out of such a scheme.
In late-breaking news last night, it was revealed Premier Anna Bligh would visit Mackay today to deliver a $300 million over four years scheme.
New commitments from yesterday's LNP Queensland election campaign launch:
- A "royalties for the regions" program;
- 10,000 extra apprenticeships through a skills and training task force;
- A second inquiry into the abuse of children in state care;
- A two-strikes policy for people who commit sexual offences against a child;
- $1 billion to deliver a promise made earlier in the campaign to upgrade and flood-proof the Bruce Hwy between Brisbane and Cairns.