Memo regional Qld: There's not enough cash to fix your woes
THE man in charge of Queensland's development has conceded he will never have enough funds to address infrastructure issues in the state's regional areas.
State Development Minister Jeff Seeney said the government had initially focused on funding areas struggling to deal with developing the resources industry through its Royalties for Regions program.
He said, responding to a question from Mount Isa MP Bob Katter during a budget estimates hearing at Queensland Parliament, the second round of funding would now include all regional councils with infrastructure shortfalls across the state.
"The biggest challenge is to get a significant amount of money directed to that program," he said.
"It's only then that we'll be able to address the infrastructure backlog that he (Katter) and I understand exists in a very real way right across regional Queensland."
Mr Seeney said getting the extra funding for "badly needed funding in regional Queensland was a next to impossible challenge" in the LNP's first term in government because of the debt it was trying to turn around.
He said he was conscious the money available for regional Queensland was pitifully small compared to the demand but was committed to turning that around.
"I come from regional Queensland and my whole life has been about representing regional Queensland," he said.
"I understand the challenges of ensuring that regional Queensland issues are recognised among the other priorities that exist here in south-east Queensland.
"While I remain in a senior level of government, I'll be striving to ensure those regional Queensland issues are addressed."