Gympie's St Patrick's Primary School and College will have a challenge paying a planned 2.7% teacher pay rise after the State Government froze Catholic school funding.
Gympie's St Patrick's Primary School and College will have a challenge paying a planned 2.7% teacher pay rise after the State Government froze Catholic school funding. Renee Pilcher

Gympie feels the budget pain

THERE was scant good news for the Gympie region in Tuesday's State Budget.

Beach access fees remained in place, though funding has been set aside to streamline permits to access National Parks, and Member for Gympie David Gibson said yesterday he remained "eternally optimistic" on the issue and would continue to make strong representations.

Funding for Section B of the Bruce Hwy upgrade and a new neighbourhood centre in Gympie by 2013 was old news, and a $23.3 million cut in the State Transport Infrastructure Development Scheme will most likely impact on Gympie Regional Council's road maintenance program, Mayor Ron Dyne said yesterday.

"I don't think Gympie faired very well out of the Budget at all," the Mayor said.

TIDS funding boosts the council's roads budget and will help fund the $2.26 million upgrade of Power Rd this year.

The maintenance of other "high-order roads" that link Gympie with neighbouring local authorities will likely suffer because of the cut.

This, with the loss of 52 jobs from the Gympie Transport and Main Roads office, the freeze on funding to Gympie's primary and secondary Catholic schools, and the loss of jobs from Queensland Health leave little reason to celebrate.

Mr Gibson said the Budget was about righting the wrongs of the previous government and halting Queensland's slide into more debt and deficit.

He said Gympie residents buying their first home off the plan would pay no stamp duty and receive a $15,000 building incentive. He said it was "the most generous home building scheme in Australia".

Parent groups will be paid to fix maintenance backlogs in every public school in Gympie through the $200 million School Maintenance fund, and Gympie Hospital patients will access specialist medical services through the boost to the Patient Travel Subsidy Scheme.

Gympie Times


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