Almost $17 million for new community infrastructure in Mackay and Isaac resource community

Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister Assisting the Premier on Olympics Infrastructure The Honourable Dr Steven Miles

Projects located in Bowen, Bakers Creek, Sarina and Moranbah will provide even better sports, community and housing facilities in the region, thanks to $16.95 million in funding from the Palaszczuk Government and the resources sector.

Moranbah Community Centre will receive a major redevelopment, a 16-unit affordable housing project will also be built in Moranbah, new netball courts will be delivered in Bowen and Sarina and Bakers Creek Australian Football Club, south of Mackay, will see the installation of new field lighting.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure Steven Miles said resources communities in the Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday region would share in Round 1 of the Queensland Government’s $100 million Resources Community Infrastructure Fund (RCIF).

“The resource sector is vital to our economy and employs around 84,000 workers, directly supporting more than 15,000 Queensland businesses,” Mr Miles said.

“Despite the challenges COVID-19 has brought, our resources sector has been able to continue operating throughout the pandemic, helping support our economy.”

Minister for Resources Scott Stewart said the Fund is a voluntary partnership between the Queensland Government, resource companies, and the Queensland Resources Council (QRC).

“The government has partnered with resource companies to see investments in the communities that support them,” Mr Stewart said.

“These communities are critical to rebuilding Queensland’s economy. And these new community infrastructure projects will create more jobs and more opportunities for regional Queenslanders.

“Not only will the 20 projects support even better facilities for their regions, they will also create more employment, creating an estimated 186 jobs for Queenslanders during construction.”

Member for Mackay Junlieanne Gilbert said the fund was created to improve social infrastructure in resources communities like Mackay to enhance wellbeing and access to services, support jobs and boost the economy as part of Queensland’s COVID-19 Economic Recovery Plan.

“Without lights, the Bakers Creek AFL players can’t train or play at night and are required to schedule games through the hottest part of the day in tropical North Queensland,” Mrs Gilbert said.

“The installation of new field lighting at the Bakers Creek AFL club will make a big difference to the community.”

Minister Stewart said another project for example is the major redevelopment of the Moranbah Community Centre to create an exciting new hub for the town.

“The Isaac Regional Council secured $8 million to help deliver the project which will provide the community with a contemporary space for entertainment, business and training,” he said.

Isaac Regional Council Mayor Anne Baker said the redevelopment of the Moranbah Community Centre would provide a new hub for town events.

“The Moranbah Community Centre is one of the town’s vital hubs for social, business and larger community gatherings,” Cr Baker said.

“We’ll now be able to redevelop and refurbish the centre, creating even better spaces for the community.

“Locals can look forward to a centre with a new layout, modern décor and electrical and audio-visual systems that will deliver even better events in addition to world class education and training.”

Queensland Resources Council Chief Executive Ian Macfarlane welcomed today’s announcement of the first 20 projects to be delivered as part of RCIF Round 1.

“As the peak state body for coal, metal and gas explorers, producers and suppliers, the QRC is proud our industry has been able to contribute $70 million to the RCIF and work with the state government to support resources communities,” Mr Macfarlane said.

“We are always looking to ensure jobs for Queenslanders in the regions, and many of these projects do just that and more for our communities.”

BHP Mitsubishi Alliance Asset President Mauro Neves said BMA was proud to be a major contributor to the RCIF.

“In addition to creating jobs and economic opportunities for central Queensland, we want to make the Bowen Basin a better place to live by investing in our communities,” he said.

“Keeping our communities safe through the COVID-19 pandemic is an ongoing priority for us. Through the RCIF, we can increase our support for the Bowen Basin and back the projects the locals want for their towns.”

Projects funded in the Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday region are:

  • Bakers Creek Australian Football Club Inc – $390,200 for field lighting for night matches and training at Bakers Creek, south of Mackay
  • Bowen Netball Association Inc – $122,493 to surface grass netball courts in Bowen
  • Isaac Affordable Housing Trust – $8,000,000 to build 16 affordable housing units, including five that are suitable for tenants supported by the National Disability Insurance Scheme
  • Isaac Regional Council – $8,000,000 to redevelop the Moranbah Community Centre
  • Sarina and District Netball Association Inc – $441,295 for new netball courts in Sarina

All projects funded under RCIF Round 1 aim to improve economic and social infrastructure in our resource communities, to enhance wellbeing and access to services and to generate jobs.

Round 1 will provide just over $47 million for 20 projects within 15 resources communities across the state.

The $100 million fund was established by a voluntary partnership between coal and mineral companies through the Queensland Resources Council and the Queensland Government.

The Queensland Government has committed $30 million to the fund with participating Queensland resources companies contributing the remaining $70 million. This funding will be distributed across two rounds.

/Public Release. View in full here.