Stock route reforms proposed to improve funding model
Published Thursday, 17 March, 2022 at 12:18 PM
Minister for Resources
The Honourable Scott Stewart
Local governments across the state will be able to maintain the state’s vital 72,000 km stock routes network more easily under changes proposed by the Palaszczuk Government.
Resources Minister Scott Stewart said the proposed legislative changes would cut red tape and ensure the network continued to serve Queensland’s $18.5 billion agriculture sector.
"The stock routes network is a key piece of infrastructure for producers who use it for agistment in times of drought, and for drovers moving and feeding up to 330,000 head of stock each year," Mr Stewart said.
“It traverses the entire state from the far north, west to the border with the Northern Territory and south to places like Goondiwindi.
“It’s local councils who know the local maintenance priorities.
“The changes before Parliament will reduce councils’ administrative costs and ensure every cent of users’ fees is reinvested in managing the network.
“We have listened to stakeholders and have introduced this legislation to ensure the ongoing care of stock routes is conducted in the most efficient way possible.
“Queensland’s agricultural sector is essential to the Palaszczuk Government’s plan for economic recovery from COVID-19 and the recent devastating floods.”
The changes are contained in the Lands and Other Legislation Amendment Bill introduced into Parliament today and flow from consultation last year on a discussion paper.
The Bill proposes:
- all fees going directly to councils. Currently, State Government and councils take half each
- an option for councils to also charge an application fee, which they can also waive for hardship, for example, during drought
- less red tape for councils around stock routes planning.
Mr Stewart said AgForce and the Local Government Association of Queensland had worked in partnership with Queensland Government agencies to progress the reform of stock routes and their management.
“The changes before the Parliament come after major consultation and collaboration was done with stakeholders, and will underpin a sustainable, functional route for travelling stock for decades to come,” he said.
The Bill to amend the legislation has been referred to the Transport and Resources Committee for consideration.
Media contact: Bryce Heaton 0434 575 237