Water security, energy infrastructure, key job creating projects and the need to keep public servant jobs in the Townsville CBD will be high on the agenda when Townsville Enterprise and the region’s five mayors join representatives from the private sector on a delegation to Canberra next month.
The two-day deputation will see representatives meet with Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull and his Cabinet, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten and his shadow ministry as well as Greens and Independent party leaders.
In addition to these meetings with leaders, there will be a series of high level networking events with some of the nation’s key decision makers including Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Michael McCormack, Minister for Regional Development John McVeigh, Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matt Canavan and Senator James McGrath.
Opposition leader Bill Shorten will also address a breakfast at Parliament House.
The coordination of this program has been supported by Senator Ian McDonald and Federal Member for Herbert Cathy O’Toole.
Townsville Enterprise Chief Executive Officer Patricia O’Callaghan said the delegation will place Townsville North Queensland at the forefront of crucial decision making ahead of the upcoming Federal Election.
“The key theme promoted in the Federal Government’s White Paper on developing Northern Australia is transforming the nation’s top end into an economic powerhouse. To achieve that, the Government needs to invest in the North.
“Having all 5 regional mayors, representatives from the private sector and Townsville Enterprise members will present a formidable force and will emphasise the contribution this region makes to the nation’s economy at a crucial time in the political calendar.
“On the back of previous successful delegations, including the two day deputation in 2016 which helped to secure $250M for the Townsville stadium, this delegation will ensure that additional job creating projects will be placed right under the noses of the nation’s key decision makers.
“We know that a stronger north means a stronger nation and we need targeted government investment and policy to support growth and stimulate business confidence. We will be making our case for the critical investment needed for Townsville North Queensland to reach its full potential.”
Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill said she would be highlighting the City Deal agreement and the need to deliver on a key water security commitment.
“There are a lot of Federal members who have no idea what happens north of Brisbane. We will be highlighting the contribution the Townsville regions has on the nation’s economy and investment and policy support we need to ensure Townsville continues to play a critical role in the development of the nation.”
Hinchinbrook Shire Mayor Cr Ramon Jayo said he’s proud to fly the flag for Hinchinbrook and will be presenting a number of job creating projects.
“The cost of power and insurance are two huge issues for residents in the Hinchinbrook region and right across North Queensland. Initiatives to bring down those costs are areas I will be making the case for as well as agricultural assistance and funding for flood mitigation.
“Water security is top of the agenda for Charters Towers regional council and Mayor, Cr Liz Schmidt said Big Rocks Weir is a key project she will be advocating for.
“We want to continue our strong advocacy for Big Rocks Weir which will provide substantial economic benefits to our region in the foreseeable future. The economic boost would benefit agriculture, transport, ancillary business and our community would all benefit, through the creation of jobs and services for our region.”
Palm Island Mayor Cr Alf Lacey said he would be pushing for jobs for locals.
“Palm Island is a growing region and we really need to see funding allocated to job creating projects for our locals to ensure we keep residents in the community.”
Burdekin Shire Council Mayor Cr Lyn McLaughlin said the delegation would present a united voice.
“Once again Townsville North Queensland local governments and businesses will put forward a united voice in lobbying for our region.
“Whilst each council has individual projects they will pursue whilst attending the delegation in Canberra, it’s great to see the region working closely together for their joint benefit rather than competing against one another.
“Together local government and regional businesses will make the strongest possible case as we push for further investment and growth in our region.”
The two-day delegation will be in Canberra from 14-16 of August.
Tickets to join the delegation events are still available and can be purchased at www.townsvilleenterprise.com.au
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