Queensland councils will create and support more than 4,600 jobs through the construction of new parks, tourism projects, road and water infrastructure to be funded under the Palaszczuk Government’s $200 million COVID-19 Works for Queensland program.
Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) President and Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson welcomed today’s release of the projects to be funded.
Regional airports at Aurukun and Rockhampton will be upgraded, breathing new life and opportunity into these communities as part of the more than 500 projects approved.
Outback and adventure tourism will build its ever-growing offering through the program with Barcaldine Regional Council to use some of its funding allocation to develop the Barcy Red, an exciting new adventure for motorbike enthusiasts.
This, combined with upgrades to Rodeo Grounds at Croydon, refurbishment of the Birdsville Tourism Park and Winton Showgrounds and a range of tourism projects planned by the Balonne Shire Council, will help further entice tourists to visit Western Queensland.
A new shade structure and disability chairlift for the Tambo Aquatic Centre will mean better access and amenity for residents, while at the Cassowary Coast, local artists and contractors will give the water and sewer facilities a new life and renewed vibrance through the installation of public art.
In Cherbourg, the local cemetery will undergo much-needed upgrades with works to include an upgraded sewer system, gazebos for patrons and landscaping, while in Redlands, the development of a Redlands Coast Eastern Hinterland Experience will provide a new tourist experience with 20 kilometres of multi-use fire trails, mountain biking tracks and shared use trails and visitor infrastructure.
In Wujal Wujal, the construction of a splash park will mean children no longer have to take risks to keep cool with crocodiles in the Bloomfield River.
Essential services councils provide to communities, like water and sewerage, will also be bolstered with a range of critical projects approved across the state.
The funding follows the LGAQ’s request for a $200 million extension of the successful Works for Queensland program in the Association’s Battleplan for Queensland Local Communities, launched on behalf of the state’s councils in a bid to help their communities weather the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We know this program works. That is why we asked the government to consider allocating an additional $200 million as part of the LGAQ’s Battleplan for Queensland Local Communities with the funding to flow to all 77 councils,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“We thank the government for its investment. Councils look forward to getting to work on the new projects to ensure jobs can be created as quickly as possible from Coolangatta to the Cape.
“The local government sector also looks forward to partnering with the State Government on other Battleplan measures as we continue to unite in the fight against COVID-19 and recover together.”