This afternoon Townsville Enterprise hosted the Deputy Premier and Minister for Health, Hon Dr Steven Miles MP and Queensland's Chief Health Officer (CHO), Dr Jeanette Young in Townsville to discuss Townsville's COVID-19 response and recovery and future plans to get the North's economy moving again.
- Enabled local government, business, tourism and hospitality industry representatives to get their questions answered directly by the Health Minister and Chief Health Officer
- Discussion included regional management zones, outback exemptions, the establishment of the Townsville COVID-19 Coordination Taskforce, importance of accelerated infrastructure projects, 'COVID Safe' plans, and stages between restrictions lifting for the hospitality and tourism sector
Joining Townsville Enterprise was Townsville City Council Mayor Jenny Hill, Townsville Chamber of Commerce CEO Ross McLennan, Townsville Hospital and Health Board Chair Tony Mooney, local State Government representatives Aaron Harper MP, Scott Stewart MP, Coralee O'Rourke MP, as well as tourism and hospitality industry representation with Matt Merrin from Jam and Bridgewater restaurants and Clare Ley from Pilgrim Sailing and Tourism Magnetic Island.
The meeting provided the opportunity for Townsville Enterprise, local business and industry leaders to gain some clarity around some of the measures the State Government has in place as restrictions are lifted and importantly provide direct feedback to the State Government on what measures would expedite our region's economic recovery.
Key points raised with the Deputy Premier and CHO included regional management zones, outback exemptions, the establishment of the Townsville COVID-19 Coordination Taskforce, importance of accelerated infrastructure projects, 'COVID Safe' plans, and clarity around the stages between restrictions lifting for the hospitality and tourism sector. For a comprehensive breakdown of the key tourism, event and hospitality questions that we have received clarity on please click HERE.
Both the Deputy Premier and CHO acknowledged the outstanding job by the Townsville North Queensland region in our response to the restrictions, managing quarantine, and that our low case numbers are testament to those efforts. The Minister reiterated that he and his government are incredibly motivated to get people back into the jobs that have either been hibernating or have been lost during the pandemic.
In regard to considering regional management zones, it was tabled that we've stood with the State Government and most of our local MPs on the health advice from the start of the pandemic and on the way into restrictions, but right now we are 31 days in without a new infection and every case has been identified. The importance of lifting restrictions as soon as possible to ensure the economy gets moving again is now critical. We will continue to advocate strongly on this position as this will be key to our economic recovery.
We thank Aaron Harper, Scott Stewart and Coralee O'Rourke for facilitating the opportunity to meet with the Deputy Premier and Chief Health Officer today after we wrote to them only on Monday, and for their ongoing efforts providing our business community's feedback to the State Government from the start of the pandemic and through the restrictions process.
We will continue to seek the answers to our members questions wherever possible as we navigate our way through this truly devastating time, and hope to provide some clearer line of sight on the many questions you have as restrictions lift. Townsville Enterprise has a firm focus on our region’s economic recovery and getting our community back into jobs and businesses doors reopened. This objective is not just a bandaid recovery solution, but a sustainable economic recovery road-map that sets the direction for a strong future for the North.