The Crest of the Commonwealth of Australia Treasury Portfolio Ministers
Picture of Wayne Swan

Wayne Swan

Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer

3 December 2007 - 27 June 2013

26 February 2011

NO.013

Joint Media Release
with
The Hon Andrew Fraser MP
Queensland Treasurer
and
Senator the Hon Joe Ludwig
Minister Assisting the Attorney-General
on Queensland Floods Recovery

Rebuilding Queensland's Local Communities

The Gillard and Bligh Labor Governments today announced a $315 million package to help Queensland's local councils repair utilities and infrastructure, and support their efforts in recovering from the floods and Cyclone Yasi.

The Queensland Local Council Package will help ensure that disaster-affected communities have the water and sewerage facilities, transport infrastructure and employment support they need to get back on their feet as quickly as possible.

This announcement demonstrates our shared commitment to rebuilding Queensland and assisting local councils after the most costly natural disasters in our history.

We know councils right around Queensland have a very big task ahead of them and this shows we're with them every step of the way.

These announcements go well beyond our obligations under the Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements, in recognition of the unprecedented scale of the damage caused to communities across Queensland in recent months.

The package has two components:

The Commonwealth and State Governments will provide up to $265 million to the Queensland Reconstruction Authority to fast-track the repair of damaged infrastructure across Queensland.

  • Severely damaged water and sewerage infrastructure owned by local government will be prioritised.
  • The fund will also provide up to $145 million to fast-track reconstruction of the Brisbane ferry terminals and the Brisbane Riverwalk.
  • Project funding will be conditional on thorough business cases that meet standard value-for-money requirements set out by the Queensland Reconstruction Authority. Applications by water entities in South East Queensland will be assessed against their commercial capacity.

A first upfront payment of $50 million will be made available to help regional and remote councils employ people to perform important clean-up and repair work, with the option to provide further funding for employment if required.

  • The package recognises the unique circumstances of many rural and regional councils in Queensland, which face difficulty in accessing contract labour due to their distance from major centres and competition with the mining industry.

The funding will be made through the Queensland Reconstruction Authority, chaired by Major-General Mick Slater, and all financial procedures will be made in close consultation with the Australian Government Reconstruction Inspectorate to ensure value for money.

Commonwealth funding for the package is $206 million, and the contribution from the Queensland Government will be $109 million.

BRISBANE
26 February 2011