Funds set to flow for Queensland water projects in the State Budget
Published Tuesday, 21 June, 2022 at 03:30 PM
Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing and Minister for Water
The Honourable Glenn Butcher
Communities across Queensland are set to benefit from the Palaszczuk Government’s 2022-23 Budget, with more than $510 million announced for water infrastructure and planning to drive jobs and better services.
Minister for Water Glenn Butcher said more than $447 million has been set aside for water security projects, which builds on the Palaszczuk Government’s record investment in water infrastructure since coming to government in 2015.
“This government supports projects that stack up and provide jobs and economic growth to Queensland communities and this budget is just more evidence of our commitment to the people of Queensland,” Mr Butcher said.
“More than $300 million has been committed to deliver the Toowoomba to Warwick Pipeline project to provide drought contingency for Warwick and surrounding communities and a permanent water supply to Toowoomba satellite communities.
“In the state’s Far North, $107.5 million over the next two years has been committed to shore up Stage 1 of the Cairns Water Security program, to support the growing needs of the far north.
“$40.4 million over three years has been allocated to construction of a drinking water pipeline from Gracemere to Mt Morgan, as well as necessary water infrastructure upgrades in Gracemere.
“We’ve committed $26 million to the Lansdown Eco-Industrial Precinct for enabling infrastructure, including a reservoir and 13km pipeline, connecting the precinct and pump station to the Haughton Pipeline – another project funded by the Palaszczuk Government,” he said.
“Further west, the Hughenden community will benefit from $25.6 million for the development of Flinders Shire Council’s Hughenden Water Bank project: a 7000 megalitre, off-stream water storage and distribution system to support development and expansion of irrigated agriculture and industry development.”
Mr Butcher said these funds could be released quickly, once the projects had been thoroughly assessed and the relevant business cases, which are nearly complete, had been submitted, and any necessary federal contribution had been committed.
“We’ve heard from regional Queenslanders that these are the projects that are important to them. We are ready to continue supporting regional Queensland communities because we know water is critical to jobs, growth and liveability in these regions,” he said.
The highly successful Building our Regions Round 6 program will progress with $39 million allocated in 2022-23 to further support regional communities with urban water supply and water treatment infrastructure.
“The Palaszczuk Government is committed to good jobs, better services and great lifestyle, and we know all these factors are critical to boosting our economy,” Mr Butcher said.
“Through Building our Regions we’re empowering Queensland councils to make their regions the best they can be. Improved water services are so important to liveability in our regions.”
The Cloncurry Community Service Obligation payments will continue, with almost $28 million over four years to subsidise the delivery of water to Cloncurry Shire Council, via the North West Queensland Pipeline.
Stage 2 of the Rural Water Futures program has also received $9.3 million in funding over the next two years to ensure the state’s precious water resources are managed sustainably into the future and to deliver tangible benefits to irrigators, the environment and community more broadly.
The 2022-23 Budget documents also detail the significant spending our government owned corporations continue to make in water infrastructure across this state.
That includes funding to prepare to rebuild Paradise Dam, investigating additional water supply, upgrading recreational areas at regional dams, finishing the South West Pipeline, dam improvement programs, and investments to critical infrastructure in central and north-west Queensland.
Safe and secure water supply is a clear focus in this year’s budget, with the following investments also confirmed:
- $7.1 million allocated over four years to enhance water modelling capacity to support water planning, water security and infrastructure assessments
- $5.5 million provided over four years to develop a Queensland bulk water infrastructure assessment plan, a strategic framework to inform future water infrastructure investment decisions
- $4.9 million over four years for a Queensland rural water compliance system, to develop improved systems and capability, which will support the department’s compliance and enforcement of the Water Act 2000
- $3.4 million over four years to address recommendations from the Queensland Audit Office report into dam safety regulation including recruiting specialist regulation, compliance and engineering staff and further developing information communication technology capability
The government is providing additional funding of $300,000 in 2022-23 to the State Council of River Trusts Queensland to continue to support the work of River Improvement Trusts across the state.
“This is a budget that delivers for the whole of Queensland. Water is one of our most precious commodities and we’ve always said we’ll fund the projects will provide jobs, growth and surety to all of our communities,” Mr Butcher said.
“I look forward to seeing the difference our continued investment in water is making right across this state.”
For more information about the State Budget visit budget.qld.gov.au.
Media contact: Emilia Hutchinson 0437 060 435