Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk included the improvement of the Fire and Emergency service facilities in the 2019 state budget.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk included the improvement of the Fire and Emergency service facilities in the 2019 state budget. Stuart Quinn

What the State Budget means for the South Burnett

THE State Budget was a unique opportunity to focus funding and resources to where Queenslanders needed it the most, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.

Ms Palaszczuk said a responsive government was at the core of what they wanted to deliver for the state.

"It underpins our commitments to create jobs in a strong economy, give our children a great start and keep Queenslanders safe and healthy,” she said.

The Palaszczuk Government included many state-wide initiatives in the budget which will benefit all Queenslanders.

They allocated $130,000 to the First Five Forever family literacy initiative which has helped parents and carers to improve development outcomes for children aged five years-old and under.

The program will be delivered through free activities including story times in libraries and splash and learn gatherings at public pools.

Funding in the South Burnett

The East Murgon Neighbourhood Centre gained $2.9 million for the next financial year, out of a total of $3.1 million to replace the existing neighbourhood centre.

Kingaroy State High School will receive $264,000 in 2018 and 2019 out of a $3.6 million total spend to construct their new multi purpose hall.

Director of Medical Services in the South Burnett, Dr Isaac Hohaia in front of the Kingaroy Hospital.
Director of Medical Services in the South Burnett, Dr Isaac Hohaia in front of the Kingaroy Hospital. Jessica McGrath

The State Budget allocated $20 million towards the $62 million Kingaroy Hospital redevelopment project, to increase the range of surgical services and number of patient treatment spaces.

The project is part of the rural and regional infrastructure package and will enhance the hospital's role as a hub for trauma, paediatric, obstetric, rehabilitation and mental health services.

Gayndah hospital will receive $3.7 million for their $4.7 million upgrade during the next financial year.

In regards to road funding, the Bunya Mountains Maidenwell Rd is due to receive funding by the 2020 to 2021 finanical year.

There was $6.5 million for the D'Aguilar Highway and a small budget was allocated for widening and sealing Byee Rd.

The Burnett Highway received $200,000 to widen and seal a 700m section between Goomeri and Gayndah.

FIRE: Fire crew were called to Wooroolin Village Meats just before 7am to put out the small fire. Photo Rhiannon Tuffield / South Burnett Times
Wooroolin fire station will receive funding in the 2019 state budget. Rhiannon Tuffield

Fire and Emergency services

Fire and Emergency services minister Craig Crawford said the government has invested $82.3 million during the next financial year into fire and emergency service facilities, vehicles, information and communications systems.

"As our personnel numbers grow it is important that they are supported through the provision of appropriate and critical infrastructure, like new fire and rescue stations,” he said.

Wooroolin received $800,000 out of a $1.4 million total towards the delivery of a new auxiliary fire and rescue station.

Kilkivan fire and rescue station also received a total of $900,000 out of $1.8 million and Yarraman received $800,000 towards their $1.5 million upgrade.

"Queensland sees more than its fair share of natural disasters and emergencies and that's why we need to ensure our emergency services have everything they need to serve the community when they need help the most,” he said.

New jobs

In order to increase training opportunities and increase workforce participation, $6.5 million out of a total $420 million was allocated to the Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative.

The State Government allocated $16.6 million for the 2018 to 2019 financial year to the $37.7 million Works for Queensland initiative in the Wide Bay.

This includes maintenance and minor infrastructure projects which will create jobs within the Wide Bay.

Agricultural industry development and fisheries minister Mark Furner said the budget promotes agricultural industry development and rural jobs, with $3.3 million, with $10 million over the next three years, for the rural economic development grants scheme.

The budget also included $34.6 million towards drought relief across the state within the Drought Assistance Package, he said.

"With more than half of our state still in drought, the Queensland Government will continue to maintain existing drought relief arrangements to drought affected communities,” Mr Furner said.

Up to $20 million of this will be available under the drought relief assistance scheme, he said.