The Council of Mayors’ (SEQ) mission to Canberra in March has paid off with some big commitments made to SEQ in last night’s Federal Budget announcement.
The proposed Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail, upgrades to the Pacific and Ipswich motorways, the Moreton Bay University Precinct and an SEQ City Deal were all on the SEQ Mayors’ hit list during a joint mission to Canberra in March to secure commitments for the region in the 2017-18 Federal Budget.
These efforts have been rewarded with a commitment of $8.4 billion for the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail, confirmation of funding for much-needed Pacific and Ipswich motorway improvements, a concessional loan to progress the Moreton Bay University Precinct and a commitment to develop a City Deals strategy for SEQ.
The Federal Government also renewed its commitment to key SEQ projects such as the Bruce Highway and Gateway Motorway North upgrades and the Toowoomba Second Range Crossing, projects the Council of Mayors (SEQ) have advocated for in previous years.
Council of Mayors (SEQ) Chair Cr Graham Quirk said the funding allocated to advancing SEQ’s infrastructure will deliver a massive boost to the region, but development of a City Deals strategy for SEQ could be a game-changer.
“The Commonwealth’s commitment to developing a City Deals strategy for SEQ is the first step in securing a comprehensive and long term plan to fund and deliver infrastructure in this region,” said Cr Quirk.
“Commonwealth support for the development of a City Deals strategy for SEQ in Budget 2017 recognises the hard work already delivered by the Council of Mayors (SEQ), in partnership with the Queensland Government.
“The SEQ Mayors will continue to pursue this opportunity with the Federal and State governments to secure the vital infrastructure this region desperately needs to relieve congestion, create jobs and fuel economic growth.”
A City Deal is an agreement between three tiers of government to prioritise and jointly invest in major infrastructure based on its anticipated economic benefit. The additional growth generated by these projects is then reinvested to fund future infrastructure.
The Council of Mayors’ (SEQ) 2017 Federal Advocacy Document, Smart, Sustainable and Safe: South East Queensland’s Collaborative Future, can be viewed in full at seqmayors.qld.gov.au.