Ready to fire up the region and Queensland's growth potential to drive productivity, prosperity and participation?
Local Government leaders from across the six councils of South West Queensland are on a mission to unlock the diverse opportunities of their region, and help drive Queensland’s growth, as part of its 2020 State Election Strategy – The Cornerstone of Opportunities.
With an eye on the road to sustainable economic growth, industry diversification and more jobs for Queenslanders, the South West Queensland Regional Organisation of Councils (SWQROC) has outlined a clear plan to unlock the ample opportunities to help its communities and those beyond its borders.
The SWQROC represents the six shires of Balonne, Bulloo, Maranoa, Murweh, Paroo and Quilpie, headed by its Chair, Balonne Shire Mayor, Cr Samantha O’Toole, and Deputy Chair Quilpie Mayor, Cr Stuart Mackenzie.
Mayor O’Toole said the region was stepping out from its corner and into the political spotlight ahead of the State Election, calling on candidates from across government, the opposition and cross bench to look to those who know the region and its potential best.
“What we need now is long term Government commitment to work with us to make it happen. I’m hopeful the days of political rhetoric and false promises are over, and we can look forward to real vision, leadership and action,” Cr O’Toole said.
“This is why we will be calling on the parties contesting the 2020 State Government Election to properly invest in the fundamentals that support industry growth, healthy and connected communities and natural resource and waste management.”
“Our region has strong foundations in its traditional industries of oil, gas and agriculture that inject billions into the economy each year,” she said.
“But there’s so much more - our emerging industries of, renewable energy, agtech and education, carbon farming and tourism have the potential to add significantly to Queensland’s prosperity and create jobs for voters in South West Queensland and beyond.”
Mayor Mackenzie said the region had been fortunate to have remained COVID-19 free which was another reason why the government needed to look at new regionally based responses to support rural and remote communities.
“There is so much untapped potential right here. Our industries and communities haven’t stopped and are ready to rev into action. With the right investment there will be a strong, long term return - this really is the Cornerstone of Opportunities,” Cr Mackenzie said.
“While there have been some good initiatives and investment from other levels of government to tackle the impact of COVID-19, what we need is sustained, strategic investment where it’s needed most. And to do that, the government needs to listen to the people in the regions.
“That’s why we have come together to develop this strategy - a straightforward three-point plan that all of our six member councils agree on to deliver benefits to our hardworking communities and the rest of Queensland.”
You can listen to Cr O’Toole talking about the importance of the region to the state and you can also read the election platform on this page.
More information will be made available as it comes to hand.
And we will let you know when responses are received from the parties.