Gympie’s multi-million dollar boost in $608m Qld projects
HOW do improvements to Kilkivan’s Equestrian Centre or a new sports complex sound?
These are two of the projects Gympie Regional Council hopes to get rolling as part of the region’s economic recovery from the pandemic as part of the Local Government Association of Queensland’s $608 million pandemic battle plan.
Seven projects have been submitted as part of the plan, which was put to the State Government last month.
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Other shovel-ready projects nominated by the council include: a new regional waste transfer station at Monkland’s Laurenceson Rd; completion of Stage Two of the Amamoor Rail Trail, including a public art immersion installation within the rail tunnel; improvements to the region’s RV sites, with a focus on Kandanga and a feasibility study for a Tin Can Bay Tourism Precinct at Norman Point.
The council would like Goomeri to get some love, too; it proposes restoring the historic railway to create a multipurpose venue which would double as the home of the town’s iconic Pumpkin Festival. Upgrades to Kilkivan’s Equestrian Centre would include powered campsites, an amenities block, yards and fencing.
Mayor Glen Hartwig said the projects were chosen for two reasons.
“Not only have these projects been specifically chosen to both boost and support our economy to help our region get back on track following on from COVID-19, we also wanted to ensure the local projects we submitted will have direct benefit to our community, right across the region which will boost the economies of the areas outside of Gympie,” Mr Hartwig said.
“We are facing a tough budget situation and prioritising the delivery of our core services first and foremost.
“To be able to deliver these projects, which we are not able to accommodate within our budget, will support both our local economy and tourism sector and create employment opportunities, which is a win-win solution for everybody.”
LGAQ President Mark Jamieson said last month the plan will create more than 14,000 jobs across the state.
“Funding this package will enable local governments to kickstart hundreds of community-building programs to create jobs and provide essential local economic stimulus in our communities,” Mr Jamieson said
On Tuesday LGAQ CEO Greg Hallam welcomed the State Government’s commitment of an additional $200 million in funding for a COVID Works for Queensland Program.
“This announcement means councils can start rolling out job-creating projects within weeks, helping bolster the construction, tourism, small business and agricultural sectors,” Mr Hallam said. “Expanding a proven job-creating program statewide means no community will be left behind.”