‘Out in the cold’: MP says region missing out on fair share
THE Premier listed the funding that Maryborough benefits from, and LNP use it to make the case that it can afford to be overlooked from the Hinkler Regional Deal.
Meanwhile, State Treasurer Jackie Trad objects to the LNP criticism that the government has no interest in Bundaberg’s economy because of her reluctance to financially back the deal.
She said the State Government was injecting $71 million into Hinkler Regional Deal projects that supported community and transport infrastructure which would have economic benefit.
“Our commitment to Bundaberg and the Wide Bay region is fully funded and being rolled out the door now,” she said.
“This is in stark contrast to much of the Federal LNP Government’s promised infrastructure spend in regional Queensland, which is not due to be spent beyond the forward estimates.
“Queensland is growing, we need that investment for regions like Bundaberg now, not way out in the never-never.”
The treasurer was asked for a list of state government funding Bundaberg received for projects that were not necessarily part of the regional deal, and it amounted to $20.4m.
In parliament on Wednesday the Premier listed the value of projects Maryborough would be getting, which amounted to $26m, and a further $103m for Bruce Highway upgrades just north of the city.
Bundaberg MP David Batt objected to how much his electorate was getting in comparison to Maryborough’s.
He said that on top of the amount the Premier listed, Maryborough was receiving an additional $100m for upgrades to the Downer rail plant, and for a contract to modify Rollingstock trains.
“The Premier and the treasurer need to pull their heads from the sand, stop making unjustifiable excuses and come to the table on the Hinkler Regional Deal which does include projects in the Maryborough electorate,” he said.
“The Bundaberg region is continually left out in the cold by this government and quite frankly, the community is sick and tired of it.
“Bundaberg residents deserve a government that will work for every electorate in Queensland, not just a hand picked few.”
Federal MP Keith Pitt said the State Government ignored the electorates that did not have Labor MPs representing them.
Mr Pitt said this was a reason why the government did not want to commit to the deal.
“The Premier has confirmed how much funding the state seat of Maryborough has received in recent years, and shows that it doesn’t need to be part of the Hinkler Regional Deal to receive funding.”