Mayors reveal State Budget wish lists
THERE was no mention of crumbs from Mayor Margaret Strelow ahead of today's State Budget announcement.
Cr Strelow is still euphoric from the art gallery funding with an $8 million commitment to the project following lobbying from Rockhampton Regional Council.
The gallery now has a $10 million commitment from the state following a $2 million commitment in the last Budget, allowing the council to move to the next stage of the project.
However, Cr Strelow said the council was still looking for more funding and support from the Federal Government.
"We're pleased to have the art gallery money there and I thank the Premier for her personal commitment which saw that delivered,” Cr Strelow said.
"Council is keen to deliver a fitting repository for Rex Pilbeam's amazing art collection and get it working for us.
"We have got a fair degree of confidence now that we will raise the full amount of money, as we know there is strong support from both political colours at federal level as well.”
As for the other items on her Budget wish-list items, Cr Strelow said the levee and super car track were amongst the top projects the council has been lobbying for.
"We haven't been asking for a particular dollar figure yet for super cars because we are still in that negotiation stage with the promoter but we are keen to know that the $25 million committed to the levee is still there and I understand that the Premier is clear on that,” Cr Strelow said.
"In terms of commitments of health, education and other areas, we look forward to looking through the Budget and seeing what's here but we recognise that those are matters that other levels of government are also playing into.”
MAYOR Bill Ludwig said it was vital the state focus on regional Queensland is continued and expanded in both this year's and in future State Budgets.
Among Cr Ludwig's Budget wish-list items were a revitalisation of the Causeway Lake, a dedicated boat ramp to service Great Keppel Island's construction phase, and the development of an aquatic centre at Cooee Bay.
Cr Ludwig said regional Queensland needed significantly greater support from both the State and Federal Government in order to fulfil its potential.
"Council would like to applaud the State Government for their support over recent years, and in particular, their focus on regional Queensland,” he said.
"Regional Queensland and Northern Australia, of which we are a part, cannot grow, prosper or fulfil its full potential without significantly greater support from both the State and Federal Government.”
Cr Ludwig's wish list for the Livingstone region includes:
A commitment from all sides of politics to expand funding programs like Works For Queensland that provide full funding without the need for communities to find matching dollars for projects like rural road networks.
Funding to undertake the dredging and a master-planned revitalisation of Causeway Lake.
Development of an aquatic centre at Cooee Bay to complement the multi-sports precincts at Barmaryee and Emu Park.
Dedicated major boat ramp and barge loading at Ritamada to service GKI construction phase and ongoing service needs, as well as the growing recreational boating needs of the region.
Funding to support the establishment of a Disaster Training Centre of Excellence in the Centre of Excellence for Disaster Management, Innovation and Community Resilience (The Hub).
Stage six of the Yeppoon Foreshore to create a 'fishermen's wharf' precinct and staged footbridge to Merv Andersen Park.
Moving of council chambers and Yeppoon Library to the old railway site in the Yeppoon CBD to activate the town centre.
Seed-funding for the staged development of a new showground and integrated equestrian precinct for the Capricorn Coast.
MAYOR of Banana Shire, Neville Ferrier, had wanted four top priorities which he wanted to see addressed in the latest State Budget. - Among his wish list were health and hospital upgrades, road and bridge upgrades and repairs, water rates and a softer implementation of the waste levy.
"I am hoping to see funds allocated for upgrades to the hospitals in the Banana Shire as modern facilities will assist the Banana Shire in attracting and retaining health professionals,” Cr Ferrier said.
When it came to state roads, Cr Ferrier said he wanted to see funds allocated in efforts to make the highways safer in the region.
"There are a number of narrow bridges on the Eidsvold Theodore Road between Theodore and Cracow that would benefit from widening,” he said.
"Callide Creek Bridge on the Burnett Highway would also benefit from widening.
"The State Government has done good work in upgrading the bridges between Biloela and Gladstone which has had a positive effect on the supply chain. A continuation of upgrades to our Beef Road would also be a welcomed project.”
As for water prices and the waste levy, Cr Ferrier said he was concerned about the impact it would have on locals.
"We need to stop the inflation on rising water prices for councils from bulk water suppliers,” he said.
"I am also concerned around the waste levy, and the impact that it will have on householders and consumers if it is rolled out in haste.”