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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Local Government, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
    The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe

    State Budget locks in local government reform, extra country racing support and multicultural funding boost

    Minister for Local Government, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
    The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe

    Tuesday, June 12, 2018

    State Budget locks in local government reform, extra country racing support and multicultural funding boost

    The Palaszczuk Government is delivering local government reform, regional job-creating programs and multicultural cohesion for all Queenslanders in the 2018-19 State Budget.

    Minister for Local Government, Racing and Multicultural Affairs Stirling Hinchliffe said council reform was a feature of the Budget, along with money to increase the safety of indigenous communities, and for country racing and jobs-generating infrastructure.

    “This Budget delivers on a series of key commitments we took to the State Election,” he said.

    “It builds on our reforms to strengthen the integrity and sustainability in local government, locking in $14.1 million over four years to establish an independent body to consider councillor complaints and improve governance practices.

    “The Budget also delivers for regional Queensland, providing job-creating programs and improving local liveability.

    “The 2018-19 State Budget confirms a further $200 million   until 2020-21will go to regional councils for the enormously successful Works for Queensland program which to date has supported more than 10,000 jobs in regional Queensland.”

    “The Budget has also delivered additional support for country racing, with funding  of $55.4 million over four years. This measure brings total funding for country racing to $70.4 million over four years.

    “The Budget strengthens Queensland’s multicultural cohesion by providing a total of $4.3 million over three years for a new program to support vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers in areas such as finance and housing assistance.

    “This includes new funding of $700,000 in 2017-18 and re-prioritised funding of $3.6 million over two years from 2018-19. A further $3 million in extra funding over three years will go to the popular Celebrating Multicultural Queensland Grants Program.
     
    The Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to deliver new and improved infrastructure in indigenous communities includes:

    • Additional funding of $20 million over three years from 2018-19 held centrally, pending an Australian Government commitment to match funding, to continue the seawall and flooding mitigation upgrades for five outer Torres Strait Islands.
    • $12 million over two years for the Torres Shire Council to upgrade drinking water infrastructure for communities on Thursday, Horn and Hammond Islands.
    • $5 million over two years to remove waste metal including vehicle stockpiles from communities in the Torres Strait Island, Torres Shire and Palm Island council areas.
    • $5 million over five years to replace asbestos cement pipelines in the Northern Peninsula Area Water Supply System.
    • $1.1 million in 2018-19 for Kowanyama Aboriginal Shire Council to buy heavy equipment and establish a road and construction unit.

     Other initiatives to receive funding in the State Budget include:

    • $400,000 in 2017-18 for an amphitheatre at Mount Archer, near Rockhampton.
    • $1.5 million in 2017-18 for a nature-based playground at Ayr
    • $5 million in 2017-18 for the ‘Beautiful Bowen’ town project.

    “The Palaszczuk Government has listened and has delivered money to where it is needed the most,” Mr Hinchliffe said.
     
    “This is a Budget that will help to deliver a better system of local government, support more jobs and build a stronger racing industry while making Queensland a more inclusive place.”
     
    Media contact: Martin Philip 0427 194 548