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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Jeff Seeney

    Newman Government commits long-term funding for regional housing crisis

    Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning
    The Honourable Jeff Seeney

    Tuesday, September 11, 2012

    Newman Government commits long-term funding for regional housing crisis

    The Newman Government’s first budget will tackle the housing crisis in Queensland’s resource regions, by providing ongoing annual funding through the Land Supply, Economic and Regional Development Initiative.

    Deputy Premier and Minister for State Development, Infrastructure and Planning Jeff Seeney said the LNP had promised decisive action and the 2012-13 State Budget marked the start of delivering on that commitment.

    “Over the next three years we will spend $100 million making a concerted attack on the problems that have beset many communities in resource regions,” Mr Seeney said.

    “In the main there’s been a shortage of land and housing which has caused houses prices and rents to go through the roof, but there are other associated growth pressures that also need to be looked at.

    “Our aim will be to bring enough land to the market to normalise real estate dealings.

    “From Mackay to Miles and to Mt Isa, towns in the resource regions will finally see some concrete action taken.

    “We want to ensure that workers like teachers and bakers and shop assistants – and not just those on the high mining workforce wages – can afford to live in these communities.
    “If we can make these communities affordable, they will be attractive places to live, they will become sustainable regional communities with a bright future – places where families will want to live.”

    Mr Seeney said developing land and selling it for housing would take time.

    “The situation cannot be changed overnight,” he said.

    “However, Queenslanders can be assured that the Newman Government is serious about addressing the problems that the previous Labor Government ignored.”

    Mr Seeney said $15 million dollars had already been committed to fast-track the release of 185 blocks of land in some of the worst affected mining towns of Moranbah and Blackwater.

    “This Budget adds another $10 million this financial year to accelerate development and make more land available,” he said.
     
    “In the next Budget we will double the funding to $50 million and add another $25 million in 2014-15 – a total of $100 million in spending in three years.
     
    “This will be a revolving fund that is likely to increase as the state’s financial position improves.

    “Proceeds from the sale of land will come back to the Government and can be used to continue to assist these communities as needed.”

    Mr Seeney said his department had conducted workshops in 11 regional resource centres to identify the particular land availability and housing problems in each and then to consider possible solutions.

    Those centres were Dalby, Roma, Toowoomba, Bundaberg, Gladstone, Emerald, Rockhampton, Mt Isa, Cairns, Moranbah and Mackay.

    “We will work with the private sector and councils to identify roadblocks, to meet demand and ease housing pressures,” Mr Seeney said.

    “The Newman Government will get the state back on track and this $100 million fund is a concrete example of our determination to achieve positive outcomes across the state.”

    [ENDS] 11 September 2012

    www.budget.qld.gov.au

    Media Contact:
    Mr Seeney’s office: John Wiseman 0409 791 281
    Mr Nicholls’ office: 07 3224 6900