News

Qld Budget 2017: Six billion dollar push for 22,000 jobs

Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt, watched by Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, speaks during a press conference at Parliament House in Brisbane, Tuesday, June 13, 2017. Mr Pitt will hand down the 2017-18 budget for the state, his third.
Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt, watched by Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, speaks during a press conference at Parliament House in Brisbane, Tuesday, June 13, 2017. Mr Pitt will hand down the 2017-18 budget for the state, his third. AAP Image - Dan Peled

SIX billion dollars will be spent to upgrade regional infrastructure in a bid to fund 22,000 jobs in Queensland's struggling areas.

But Treasurer Curtis Pitt denied the money was pork-barrelling in Labor-held seats designed to stave off the LNP and One Nation.

Mr Pitt on Tuesday handed down the 2017 Queensland Budget, promising to spend $10.17 on capital works statewide in 2017-18.

That figure will grow to $42.75 billion over the next four years.

Budget documents show $6.6 billion will be spent outside Brisbane, Logan and the Gold Coast in the coming financial year, compared to $7.4 billion for regional projects in 2016.

Mr Pitt said the government infrastructure and employment programs would support about 40,000 jobs in the coming financial year, more than half of which will be in regional areas.

"Positive signs are emerging in several areas in regional Queensland," he told parliament.

"But there is no question that more needs to be done to lift employment opportunities in some areas of Queensland."

But he denied the money was pork barrelling in marginal seats in the lead up to the next election.

"We have a number of big projects happening throughout parts of far north Queensland, north Queensland, Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton. Are there local Labor members of parliament there? Absolutely," he said.

"These are the centres, the main convention centres in Queensland that require the sort of funding arrangements that we're putting in place in the budget."

The government's Back to Work program will be expanded into the south-east corner to target unemployment in outer-urban areas like Ipswich and regional centres including Toowoomba and the Sunshine Coast.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk (centre), Treasurer Curtis Pitt (right) and Deputy Premier Jackie Trad walk to a press conference at Parliament House in Brisbane, Tuesday, June 13, 2017. Mr Pitt will hand down the 2017-18 budget for the state, his third.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk (centre), Treasurer Curtis Pitt (right) and Deputy Premier Jackie Trad walk to a press conference at Parliament House in Brisbane, Tuesday, June 13, 2017. Mr Pitt will hand down the 2017-18 budget for the state, his third. AAP Image - Dan Peled
The Back to Work program was announced in 2016 as a two-year program to target unemployment in regional areas but regional parts of the south-east were not covered.

Employment minister Grace Grace said the program's success in regional areas prompted its expansion.

"Regional employers are embracing the Back to Work program in ever increasing numbers, with the program already supporting over 4300 jobs in the regions," she said.

"We think the program can work just as well in the south-east, where it will be specifically targeted at those who've been out of work for 52 weeks or more and young jobseekers aged 15-24 years."

The Works for Queensland funding program for council infrastructure will also receive a $200 million funding boost. Deputy Premier Jackie Trad said the project would fund needed local projects.

"This initiative is designed to get local people into local jobs, boosting the regional economy immediately where it is needed the most," she said. 

News Corp Australia

Topics:  editors picks employment infrastructure jobs queensland budget 2017


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Petrol price hike: Motorists urged to buy now

PETROL PRICES: As of this morning, 23 percent of Brisbane retailers had moved to a new high price of 139.9 cents per litre (cpl) for unleaded petrol.

Motorists in se Queensland are being urged to fill the tank today.

New award paints future

YOUNG ARTISTS: Bribie Island Community Arts Centre organising committee members Sarah Cave and Lynne Smith prepare for the onslaught of entries.

Win big at youth art competition

Armed with right tools for support

MEN'S SHED: Bribie welcomes the first formal Men's Shed to be opened on the Island.

Community Men's Shed Bribie Island (CMSBI) has been formerly opened.

Local Partners

Taylor Swift wipes presence off social media

TAYLOR Swift has completely disappeared off social media — and her fans don’t know what to think.

Swedish TV drama turns up heat

Louise Nyvall stars in the Swedish TV series Farang.

Scandinavian crime thriller goes troppo

Aboriginal artists' call to action

Anwar Young, winner of this year's overall prize and last year's young artist prize.

Important messages of survival and healing

Radio host Matt Okine leaps to small screen

Valene Kane, Matt Okine and Harriet Dyer star in the TV series The Other Guy.

First foray into acting a long time in the making

Hollywood’s new highest paid actress

Jennifer Lawrence had to settle for third this year behind Emma Stone and Jennifer Aniston.

CAN you guess who has dethroned Jennifer Lawrence?

Movie trailer dubbed too racy for TV

Alicia Vikander stars in Tulip Fever.

THE trailer for Tulip Fever is so saucy some networks have banned it

Liz Hurley, 52, has never looked better

She’s definitely not shy to pose in a bikini.

Life in your 50s has never looked as good as it does on Liz Hurley.

EXPLAINED: What the 'Costco effect' means for Ipswich

PRICE WARS: A Costco store similar to this one in Canberra, is planned for Ipswich.

Exclusive 'cult' about to change how families do grocery shopping

4800 homes to be built in massive new Coast estate

Masterplanned community full steam ahead - it's not Caloundra South

Open for inspection homes August 17 - 23

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection.

Airbnb, Stayz and co tipped to squeeze Coast housing market

HOLIDAY BOOM: Airbnb letting is putting a further squeeze on long-term rentals.

Councils exploring options to manage the industry

How we got a rental straight away on the Coast

Rita and David Allara, moved down from Townsville, paid three months up front rent to secure the place at flash new unit block in Kings Beach.

Genius move helps secure rental property

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!