Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

CAT D FUNDING LET-DOWN; A 'Kick in the Guts' for Cyclone-Affected Communities

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

CAT D FUNDING LET-DOWN; A 'Kick in the Guts' for Cyclone-Affected Communities

Article excerpt

Byline: Campbell Gellie campbell.gellie@dailymercury.com.au

The Deputy Premier of Queensland is "gutted" for the disaster-affected communities of Whitsunday, Mackay, Isaac and Rockhampton after the Federal Government last night failed to stump up its share of the $220million recovery package. Under Category D disaster relief, the State had made a case for $110million from the Federal Government but we can reveal their contribution will only be $29million, which Jackie Trad's office calculates is about 0.006% of the entire Federal Budget. CONTINUED | P7

From Page 1

It means there won't be money for the Whitsunday Coast Airport upgrade, Airlie Beach Revitalisation, Bluewater Trail and Queens Park upgrade, Shute Harbour or South Rockhampton Flood Levee.

At 5pm yesterday Jackie Trad was told that the Category D disaster relief package would be $58.6million - it's timing she believes was to ensure the issue didn't generate much attention.

"This is a kick in the guts for those communities."

Under the rules of the National Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements the State Government proposes a package to the Federal Government and they decide what is ultimately funded.

Under the proposal $135million was requested for the Whitsunday Coast Airport upgrade, Shute Harbour upgrade, Airlie Beach Revitalisation, Bluewater Trail and Queens Park upgrade and South Rockhampton Flood Levee.

"These projects were identified by the local councils as an important shot in the arm," Ms Trad said last night.

However, after sitting on the application for at least one month the Federal Government has come back with just $1.5million.

The Daily Mercury understands that will be split between the Airlie Beach lagoon ($500,000 to fix pumps) and the Airlie Beach foreshore ($350,000 for landscaping and to repair infrastructure including park benches); and the Bluewater Trail in Mackay ($660,000 for that restoration work). …

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