Queensland’s communities and councils deserve fair and firm funding, the state’s councils say, demanding the Federal Government restore Financial Assistance (FA) Grants to at least 1 percent of tax revenue and indexed annually.
Queensland councils voted unanimously at the Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) Annual Conference in Gladstone today, to call on the Commonwealth to restore the FA Grants to the level communities needed to survive and thrive.
“Councils continue to do more with less, but we cannot maintain our financial sustainability and the liveability of our communities without increased funding,” LGAQ President and Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson said.
“Liveability and sustainability go hand in hand.
“Financially sustainable councils are critical to ensure economic benefits flow to communities.
“But the current allocations are too low and continuing to fall – down from 0.52 percent last year to 0.5 percent this Federal Budget.
“Not only will restoring FA Grants to at least 1 percent – or just an extra 23 cents per Queenslander per day – help fund the many projects and services local government provide, but it will also add $638 million to the state economy and provide 4,233 jobs for Queenslanders.”
Funding uncertainty was also hurting communities, with the Albanese Government’s drawn-out infrastructure review adding to costs as well as the narrowing of Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program qualifications hitting councils, Mayor Jamieson said.
“Communities and councils deserve fair and firm funding that will help create and guarantee liveable communities that thrive, not just survive,” Mayor Jamieson said.
Ratepayers should not be left to shoulder the burden when other levels of government pulled back or pulled out, he said.
“We are also calling for an end to the cost-shifting that means councils are having to make choices between vital community services because they are being forced to spend ratepayer money where other levels of government have pulled back or pulled out,” Mayor Jamieson said.
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