Half of Queensland Government employees to work in regions
MORE than 100,000 Queensland Government employees, about half of all full-time equivalents, will be living outside south-east Queensland in 30 years' time.
The Bruce Highway will be eight lanes to the Sunshine Coast and four lanes all the way to Cairns.
And there could be an immigration policy set up to settle new Australians in regional Queensland.
Premier Campbell Newman said the Bruce Highway goal from delegates at the Queensland Plan summit in Brisbane sounded like a "pretty good target".
He said they also wanted life expectancy to go up 10 years in the next 30 years and ensure 95% of the population would be involved in productive community activity.
Mr Newman said he himself threw in the suggestion 50% of government employees should be outside south-east Queensland to show he was "fair dinkum" about decentralising the state.
"What has come through strongly is for half the population to be outside the south-east," he said.
"We then have to come up with policies and incentives right across the state to encourage that to occur.
"It would involve every local government working with my administration over the next year or two to work out what each community can do, how they can capitalise on existing strengths to create those jobs and provide the locations for those new homes that'll be required.
"It stands to reason that government must reflect that by making services out in the regions."
Mr Newman said regional Queensland must grow from 1.7 million to 4 million people in the next 30 years, while south-east Queensland should grow from 2.8m to 4m.
He said there were about 185,000 FTE positions within government now but assuming a 2% population growth in 30 years, that would mean more than 100,000 people in regional Queensland.
"It's a big job, it involves a lot of people and their families and that's why if you decide to do this, you need a 30-year pathway to achieve it," he said.
Mr Newman said he believed a strategy with the Federal Government to settle immigrants in regional areas could work and building infrastructure would also encourage growth outside Brisbane.
He said it was also about seizing opportunities and creating jobs to make communities grow.
Opposition treasurer Curtis Pitt said there were a lot of good ideas and nice aspirations but we are not seeing any actual outcomes.
TOP 10 PRIORITIES
- Education that is flexible, affordable and accessible to all including rural, remote and disadvantaged
- Communities that are well planned, well connected and engender community spirit
- Queensland being recognised as internationally competitive and an increase in exports/business especially in agriculture and ecotourism sectors
- Regions being attractive to study, work and live for bright minds and trained professionals
- Delivery of economic, social and community benefits through infrastructure
- A long-term approach to planning and delivery of infrastructure
- The highest productivity rate in Australia with no skills shortages
- Investment and research into innovation in Queensland's area of strengths
- Centres of excellence attracting human capital and driving innovation
- An education model which leverages community/industry partnerships
- Draft plan will go out to all delegates and available on web for all Queenslanders.
- Project team will gather all feedback and interpret.
- Finalise actual document to wheel into Queensland Parliament.
- Queensland Parliament will pass a Queensland Plan bill which will be used as a base for State Government policy and strategy.
- Government departments must consider the plan in all decision making.