Sandy Bolton MP. Photo: Patrick Woods
Sandy Bolton MP. Photo: Patrick Woods

State Budget big spend explained by local MP

From first appearances, this budget has no surprises, and continues from the Unite and Recover Strategy and COVID-19 Fiscal and Economic review delivered in September this year.

The focus on Queensland made and job creation through shovel ready projects across the State remains prominent.

Increased or new funding in a number of arenas includes wellness professionals in our schools, the palliative care strategy and suicide prevention initiatives. Extra frontliners for Queensland’s emergency sectors includes firefighters and police, and given the ongoing management of COVID-19, essential.

Free TAFE and free apprenticeships now include those up to 25 years of age which will assist both our youngsters and business who are seeking apprentices in multiple industries within Noosa.

Government will now have a 25 per cent target in procurement from our small to medium business, embedding non price related considerations of social and environmental outcomes. Assistance in many forms includes the extremely popular Small Business Adaption Grants and retention of other initiatives such as payroll tax refund and payment waivers.

Noosa specifics as below includes the Cooloola Great Walk and Tewantin netball courts. Stages 2 and 3 of Beckmans Rd intersection was not expected to be in the mix given the progress of designs, however trust that TMR and Council will escalate efforts to have those ready for the next Budget in June, unbelievably only seven months away.

Additionally, other projects in our ‘list’ including upgrades to sports facilities and the Regen Hub have a way to go before funding consideration, though the smaller projects should have designs and costings ready for grants in the first part of 2021.

The urgent priority as outlined to the minister last week, is to accommodate a resolution to the impacts to our hinterland communities of the inappropriate volume of heavy haulage that is impacting residents, businesses and infrastructure.

With designs and costings not expected until the new year, and community consultation desired, consideration of this cannot be undertaken until then.

Overall, at a glance as stated at the beginning, no surprises.