Monday, 9 November 2020
Statements by Members
Dawson Electorate: Road Infrastructure
During the recent Queensland election we saw a lot of misinformation being bandied around by the Labor Party. One of the bigger lies was that the Morrison Liberal-National government's recent budget provided nothing for the Bruce Highway. The 2020-21 year allocation just in my electorate of Dawson provides for the Bruce Highway a share of $20 million for the upgrade strategy; $26.4 million for blackspots, rest areas and safety upgrades; $156 for the Bruce Highway safety package; $1.5 million for the Goorganga Plains upgrade planning; $93 million for the Haughton River floodplain upgrade, or the Haughton bridge upgrade; $919,000 for the Jumper Creek upgrade; $2 million for the Mackay northern access upgrade; $14 million for overtaking lanes; $13 million for pavement widening; over $20 million for road operation improvement projects; $4.7 million to continue the Burdekin bridge upgrade; and $12.6 million to complete Mackay Ring Road stage 1. What Labor mean when they say 'nothing' is over $364 million in my electorate alone.
But funding for roads doesn't stop there. There's also $29.6 million for the Shute Harbour Road under the Roads of Strategic Importance initiative, and more than $5.8 million for local councils through the Roads to Recovery program, Bridges Renewal Program and Black Spot Program— (Time expired)
I want to congratulate Focal Community Services, headquartered in Ipswich, for their amazing efforts to innovate and ensure people living with disabilities and their carers can feel engaged, supported and included. Focal's original name was Friends of Challinor Aid League. It was established in 1974, when people leaving Challinor Centre living with disability and their families and friends in the community wanted to make sure they were cared for and had opportunities in life. Since then Focal have provided services and support for people with disability, including accommodation, respite, advocacy and community services.
Four years ago Focal brought in Mickael Blanc as the CEO. When I first met him he came across as someone with determination and real vision to grow the organisation along with the NDIS. Under his leadership Focal have now grown to cover 600 residential or clients—or friends as they call them—with 200 staff across Brisbane, Redlands and Logan.
Last week I was proud to join Mickael, staff, service providers, families members and friends—along with Betty who was an original board member—to open the new community hub in Booval in Ipswich in my electorate. The hub is a bright and welcoming place where clients can hang out, undertake training, visit with service providers and receive friendship and nurture. It's a safe and comfortable environment. Congratulations to Focal. It's fantastic to see the growth. I want to congratulate everyone there for the work done in South-East Queensland by Focal.