By Jess Baker
The 2020-21 Queensland State Budget has been handed down today by Treasurer Cameron Dick.
It does not reveal any major spending announcements for the Southern Downs and Granite Belt, or any mention of the Toowoomba to Warwick pipeline.
It does, however, include two new funding announcements: $5.8 million over four years will be allocated to the construction of a new multipurpose hall and disability access project at Warwick State High School, and $879,000 ($137,000 in 2020-21) will be spent on the redevelopment of Bald Rock Creek and Castle Rock camping areas at Girraween National Park near Stanthorpe.
Though already announced, the Budget also states $6 million in 2020-21 out of a $25 million total spend will be allocated to upgrading the intersection of the Cunningham Highway and New England Highway to the north of Warwick. This expenditure is delivered in partnership with the Australian Government. In addition, $497,982 in 2020-21 out of a $2.5 million total spend will fund a new water reservoir at the Warwick wastewater sewage treatment plant to supply industry with Class A recycled water.
Member for Southern Downs James Lister said he welcomes new spending announcements for improvements to Girraween National Park campgrounds, for safety improvements to Coolmunda Dam and for water and kerbside recycling for Southern Downs Regional Council.
Yet he said he is disappointed to see there is no money to repair and de-gravel the Bracker Creek inflow into Coolmunda Dam, particularly as he and Shelly Rielly have been calling for funding and met personally with the minister to highlight the problem.
“I am also disappointed there is no funding to improve the dreadful sections of the Cunningham Highway between Yelarbon and Goondiwindi, nor the Gore Highway between Goondiwindi and Millmerran,” Mr Lister wrote.
“The state Labor government is aware of the condition of these roads, and I will continue to fight to get them fixed.”