Simon Crean
Simon Crean Marc Stapelberg

Regional infrastructure's $130m boost

MORE than $130 million would be spent on infrastructure projects in regional Queensland including airport upgrades and community centres, Regional Australia Minister Simon Crean announced Monday.

Mr Crean said the government had secured $100 million in private and state government backing to add to $33.6 million of Federal Government funds.

The federal funds come from round two of the $1 billion Regional Development Australia Fund.

Among the projects to be secured were an upgrade of Emerald Airport, an events centre for Mackay and an arts and community centre for Toowoomba.

"The important thing about this program is that in round two we have been able to leverage more funding for all the projects from other sources," Mr Crean said.

"On this target, the real spend on projects in regional Australia from the $1 billion fund should be closer to $4 billion.

"All these projects are things that local community have been asking for, and whether that's airports in mining areas or community centres, we're giving regional Australia what it has asked for."

"The local communities have responded to the challenge of developing creative proposals that stack up, effectively leverage other funding and sustain the economic and social future of their regions."

While the first round of grants were announced together last year, Mr Crean said the announcements for this round would be staggered as last year's announcement was "a little lost".

He said the eight projects in Queensland could create up to 180 jobs during construction and potentially create more than 400 jobs after the projects were complete.

The funding, which to date has come from consolidated revenue, will come directly from the mining tax from the next round.The projects selected in Queensland are:

  • $7.78m to Moreton Bay Regional Council towards the $44.89m The Corso at the Lakes Construction;
  • $5m to the Torres Strait Island Regional Council towards the $24m Torres Strait Coastal Protection Works;
  • $5m to the Ipswich City Council towards the $15m Robelle Domain (Stage 2) Parkland Development;
  • $4.99m to the Central Highlands Regional Council towards the $9.98m Emerald Airport Apron Extension;
  • $4.99m to the Mackay Regional Council towards the $29.10m Mackay Regional Events Centre;
  • $3.40m to ACT for Kids towards the $4.60m ACT for Kids Child and Family Centre of Excellence;
  • $2m to Toowoomba Regional Council towards the $5.5m Toowoomba Regional Arts and Community Centre;
  • $500,000 to the Somerset Regional Council towards the $1m Kilcoy Showground Facility Development.

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