Labor's Bill Byrne slams the state for ignoring Rockhampton
BILL Byrne has slammed the State Government, saying its budget failed to deliver anything new for Central Queensland.
The Member for Rockhampton said the Newman government did not give a hoot about regional Queensland, and CQ was not on the LNP's radar.
Mr Byrne said there was not a single new initiative in the Fitzroy 2014-15 regional budget statement.
The projects that were identified were an aggregation of spends that had already been announced or were part of Labor commitments.
"This budget holds nothing for the people of Rockhampton," he said. "For the first time in two decades we see no new construction in Rockhampton."
Mr Byrne also took aim at the spending in Premier Campbell Newman's electorate. "... the Premier has already been out there blowing the trumpet about the fact that the government spent $95 million in Ashgrove. If only one-tenth of that came to Rockhampton I would be happy," he said.
Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney responded yesterday, saying the budget provided a strong plan for a brighter future for CQ.
He said the Fitzroy 2014-15 regional budget statement outlined a capital spend of more than $650 million for roads, schools, hospitals and other initiatives.
"The government's flagship Royalties for the Regions program has provided a capital spend of $42.8 million for the Fitzroy region in the 2014-15 and 2013-14 budgets," Mr Seeney said.
"Our record contribution of $768 million to improve the Bruce Hwy over the next year will provide great benefits to Central Queensland residents, along with $21 million to upgrade the Peak Downs Hwy and $12 million for the Capricorn Hwy."
Mr Seeney said the Great Results Guarantee had provided a total of $1,747,000 to 15 schools in the elector
ate of Rockhampton and $958,700 to 14 schools in the electorate of Keppel to improve student performance.
"Then there's the $435,000 we have provided in this year's budget for a two-year trial of an early intervention youth boot camp in Rockhampton to improve the region's safety," he said.
"I believe these examples demonstrate Central Queensland is squarely on our government's radar."