Ministers for the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/ Latest releases from the Ministers en New passenger safety rules for Australian commercial vessels https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/mccormack/media-release/new-passenger-safety-rules-australian-commercial-vessels <p>The Australian Government has announced new measures to improve the safety of passengers on Australian commercial vessels.</p> <p>Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the changes strengthened requirements to ensure passengers were accounted for throughout their journey.</p> <p>“These changes take a holistic approach to passenger safety and follow extensive industry and public consultation to deal with the complexities and careful consideration of the diverse needs of our commercial vessel sector,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>“These changes include mandating the recording of passenger counts at the end and beginning of every voyage. Higher-risk vessels such as cruise boats and tourism vessels will be required to count passengers whenever they get on and off the vessel – not just at the start and end of a voyage.</p> <p>“We have clearly defined the responsibilities for operators to have effective procedures to monitor passengers and to have evidence of their safety and emergency procedures for a missing passenger, recorded in their Safety Management System. This will ensure the regulator, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), can verify their compliance with these new rules.”</p> <p>Based on industry feedback, the changes will enable operators to use the best safety systems and technology for their individual operations – whether that is on/off counting, electronic wristbands, CCTV monitoring or other tools – to ensure their crew can respond to passenger safety incidents as quickly as possible.</p> <p>The next step will be educative, helping owners and operators in the industry to comply with the rules that take effect on 31 May 2020.<br />  </p> <h2>Media Contact: </h2> <p><strong>Mr McCormack -</strong> Tess Salmon 0467 740 017 | Dean Shachar 0418 202 860</p> McCormack New passenger safety rules for Australian commercial vessels Lockyer Valley Inland Rail business cases fast tracked https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/coulton/media-release/lockyer-valley-inland-rail-business-cases-fast-tracked <p>Investigating the viability of the Lockyer Valley Inland Rail connection is one of four projects selected to be fast tracked as part of the Inland Rail Interface Improvement Program (II Program).</p> <p>The Liberal and Nationals Government has committed $44 million to the Inland Rail II Program to assess the cost and benefits of various additional connections to the national freight rail network including investigating ways to build industry and supply chain resilience and improve market access for farmers and manufacturers through enhanced connection to Inland Rail.</p> <p>Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Lockyer Valley is traditionally one of Australia’s strongest horticulture producing regions.</p> <p>“The agricultural output of the Lockyer Valley typically exceeds $285 million per year, with the region producing roughly 20 per cent of the total vegetable production in Queensland and around 5 per cent of Australia’s total vegetable production,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>“Like so many others, farmers and producers in the Lockyer are battling the enduring impacts of fire and drought and they need to know they have access to a reliable, interconnected, national freight network that will deliver their produce to markets when and where it is needed.</p> <p>“Inland Rail has always been about far more than building a rail line – it’s about investing in our regions and connecting Australians through fast, reliable freight that delivers the food we eat, the furniture in our homes and the clothes we wear,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>Under the II Program, strategic business cases will identify opportunities to support more productive rail-based supply chains at regional centres and help build capacity on key country rail lines.</p> <p>Minister for Finance Mathias Cormann said the Government continued to implement its plans to build a stronger economy and create more jobs and was very happy that the Lockyer Valley component under the Infrastructure Investment Program would be fast tracked.</p> <p>“Better freight connectivity and efficiency helps drive stronger economic growth and will maximise the returns for our national productivity which we know Inland Rail will deliver,” Mr Cormann said.</p> <p>“Transport costs are a significant overhead for Australian businesses which inevitably are then passed on to consumers. By maximising the community and business connections to Inland Rail, our investments to improve the interface with existing infrastructure ensures more people can enjoy high quality competitively priced and locally grown produce.”</p> <p>Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communities and Local Government Mark Coulton said the fast tracked program reflects the commitment of The Nationals in Government to provide opportunities for regional communities.</p> <p>“We want to help regions play to their strengths by removing the barriers to growth and by investing in productivity enhancements that build resilient local economies,” Mr Coulton said.</p> <p>“Enhancing supply chain efficiencies means more money stays in the pockets of local producers, building more resilient communities and industries. Inland Rail provides the opportunities for cost savings, with the fast and reliable freight transport option placing our products on supermarket shelves across Australia and beyond our shores.</p> <p>“We want to build the infrastructure – infrastructure such as Inland Rail – that can make a real difference for regional and rural Australians.</p> <p>For more information on Inland Rail and the Interface Improvement Program, visit <a href="http://www.inlandrail.gov.au/">www.InlandRail.gov.au</a>.</p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr McCormack</strong></p> <p>Tess Salmon 0467 740 017</p> <p><strong>Senator Cormann</strong></p> <p>Karen Wu 0428 350 139</p> <p><strong>Mr Coulton</strong></p> <p>Steph Nicholls 0417 314 920</p> Coulton Lockyer Valley Inland Rail business cases fast tracked Federal funding to fix 51 Black Spots in Queensland https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/mccormack/media-release/federal-funding-fix-51-black-spots-queensland <p>Fifty one dangerous crash sites in Queensland will be substantially improved under the latest round of the Federal Liberal and Nationals Government’s Black Spot Program.</p> <p>Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the state would receive $25.3 million under the Black Spot Program’s 2020–21 funding round.</p> <p>“The Federal Government’s record investment into upgrading roads is saving lives right across the nation,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>“No matter where you live, we want to help get Australians home to their families sooner and safer – especially regional Australians who make up about a quarter of our national population but account for more than half of the roads deaths.</p> <p>“The Black Spot Program funds important safety measures such as traffic signals and roundabouts at locations where a number of serious crashes have occurred.</p> <p>“The 51 Black Spot projects across Queensland will therefore make an important contribution towards reducing serious injuries and deaths on our roads.”</p> <p>Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said this investment in Black Spot projects would deliver safer roads in local government areas throughout the state.</p> <p>“The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics has found Black Spot projects reduce the number of crashes causing death and injury by an average of 30 per cent,” Mr Buchholz said.</p> <p>“The high-priority locations we are funding have seen a total of 12 fatal and 233 crashes causing injuries recorded over the past five years.”</p> <p>The panel which reviews priorities for the program includes representatives from the Queensland Police Service, Royal Automobile Club of Queensland, Queensland Trucking Association, Bicycle Queensland, Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety (Queensland University of Technology) and state and local government.</p> <p>The Federal Liberal and Nationals Government has committed $1 billion to the Black Spot Program from 2013–14 to 2022–23 to improve road safety across the nation.</p> <p>For more information on the Australian Government’s Black Spot Program, or to nominate a black spot, visit: <a href="http://investment.infrastructure.gov.au/funding/blackspots/">http://investment.infrastructure.gov.au/funding/blackspots/</a>.</p> <p>A list of funded projects is available below.</p> <p> </p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr McCormack</strong> – Hannah Maguire 0429 920 254</p> <p><strong>Mr Buchholz</strong> – Scott O’Connell 0413 424 384</p> <p> </p> <h2>Queensland Black Spot Program 2020–21</h2> <div> <table> <thead> <tr> <td>  <p><strong>Project Name</strong></p> </td> <td> <p><strong>Proposed Treatment</strong></p> </td> <td> <p><strong>Australian Government Contribution</strong></p> </td> <td> <p><strong>Council</strong></p> </td> </tr> </thead> <tbody> <tr> <td> <p>Petrie Creek Road<br /> Plantation Retirement Resort - Paynter River<br /> ROSEMOUNT</p> </td> <td> <p>Reconstruct existing curve with revised vertical grading, incorporating curve widening, superelevation, sealed shoulders, signage, enhanced delineation, chevron alignment markers, linemarking, guide posts and reflective raised pavement markers</p> </td> <td> <p>$240,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Pamela Street<br /> Trainor Street<br /> MOUNT ISA</p> </td> <td> <p>Construction of a roundabout</p> </td> <td> <p>$100,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Mount Isa City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Shea Road<br /> 50m south of Theodore Road Intersection<br /> KURWONGBAH</p> </td> <td> <p>Reconstruct and widen Shea Road at the sharp narrow bend on the crest of the hill. Changing the horizontal and vertical alignment together with delineation enhancement</p> </td> <td> <p>$298,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Moreton Bay Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Sheridan Street<br /> Aplin Street<br /> CAIRNS</p> </td> <td> <p>Construction of a short right-turn lane for Aplin Street, western approach, signal modification, controlled right-turn phases for each approach and mast arm installations on Sheridan Street and Aplin Street</p> </td> <td> <p>$230,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Cairns Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Exeter Street<br /> Tavistock Street<br /> TORQUAY</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of painted Chevron on Tavistock Street over crest, painted threshold on minor legs, centre median giveway signage on both minor road legs, advanced warning signage and linemarking and upgrading pedestrian ramps</p> </td> <td> <p>$80,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Paradise Parade<br /> Falkinder Avenue<br /> PARADISE POINT</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of one-lane roundabout and new warning signs</p> </td> <td> <p>$377,500</p> </td> <td> <p>City of Gold Coast</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Mount Stuart Road<br /> Length of Road<br /> ROSENEATH</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of long steep winding climb and descent motorcycle warning signs with advisory speed signs, chevron alignment markers, paint edge lines, guide posts, install guard rail and rub rails</p> </td> <td> <p>$808,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Townsville City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Pamela Street<br /> Deighton Street<br /> MORNINGTON</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a dumbbell type roundabout. The new design incorporates on-road cycle lanes westbound on Pamela Street, northbound on Deighton/Isa Street and southeast bound on Isa Street due to space constraints</p> </td> <td> <p>$250,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Mount Isa City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Digger Street<br /> McKenzie Street<br /> CAIRNS</p> </td> <td> <p>Construction of a roundabout and installation of BAZ (Bicycle Awareness Zones), approach speed limit signage,  on-road-off-road transition and upgrade of street lighting</p> </td> <td> <p>$360,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Cairns Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Exeter Street<br /> Bideford Street<br /> TORQUAY</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a centre median island, signage, yellow no parking lines and upgrading the pedestrian ramps and street lighting</p> </td> <td> <p>$83,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Keong Road<br /> Dawn Street<br /> ALBANY CREEK</p> </td> <td> <p>Install painted channelized right-turn lane, chevron linemarkings, RRPMs, new yellow line, new edge lines and continuity line. Reconstruction and widening of four driveways to allow easy access and to accommodate the right-turn lane</p> </td> <td> <p>$45,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Moreton Bay Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Albert Street<br /> John Street<br /> MARYBOROUGH</p> </td> <td> <p>Repaint red stencil threshold treatment and install centre median island and giveway signs, yellow no parking lines on approaches and main road, upgrade pedestrian ramps and install pedestrian refuge on minor legs</p> </td> <td> <p>$108,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Glenview Road<br /> Nina Drive - Leeding Road<br /> GLENVIEW</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of vehicle-activated signs, chevron alignment markers, guide posts, chevron marker signs and safety barriers. Replace splayed terminal ends with compliant terminals and removal of trees on the inside of the curve. Replace fencing with weld mesh fence panels</p> </td> <td> <p>$385,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Lindsay Road<br /> Tulip Lane - Jones Road<br /> BUDERIM</p> </td> <td> <p>Widening, removal of roadside hazards, upgrading alignment and installation of warning signs and chevron alignment markers</p> </td> <td> <p>$444,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Cedar Pocket Road<br /> Gap Road<br /> CEDAR POCKET</p> </td> <td> <p>Clearing roadside vegetation, installation of chevron alignment markers, guardrails, linemarking, end treatments and warning signs. Reduce speed limit from existing 80 km/h to 60 km/h and realign and widen sealed pavement at two locations</p> </td> <td> <p>$755,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Gympie Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Kingsthorpe - Haden Road<br /> 1.5km section<br /> BOODUA</p> </td> <td> <p>Improvements to clear zones, curve widening, new formed sealed shoulders, installation of line markings, guideposts, and CAMs</p> </td> <td> <p>$627,575</p> </td> <td> <p>Toowoomba Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Spiegelhauer Road<br /> In Paluma Range National Park<br /> CRYSTAL CREEK</p> </td> <td> <p>Correcting the road alignments, sealing, installation of warning signs and modification of the one-lane floodway</p> </td> <td> <p>$659,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Townsville City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Raceview Street<br /> Robertson Road<br /> EASTERN HEIGHTS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of new traffic signals. A single mast arm is to be installed however directing both directions on the single post due to obstructions through the intersection</p> </td> <td> <p>$75,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Ipswich City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Batchlers Road<br /> Between Moore Park Road and Loeskow Street<br /> GOOBURRUM</p> </td> <td> <p>Realignment of the curve and vertical alignment on approach. Widen sealed road section and seal unsealed section. Clear vegetation and install guideposts with reflectors, curve alignment markers with advisory speed signage</p> </td> <td> <p>$308,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Bundaberg Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Exeter Street<br /> Honiton Street<br /> TORQUAY</p> </td> <td> <p>Install centre median island and give way signs, pedestrian refuges on minor legs, yellow lines and upgrade pedestrian ramps and street lighting</p> </td> <td> <p>$95,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Round Hill Road - Section Two<br /> 3.2kms from intersection with Captain Cook Drive<br /> ROUND HILL</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of street name signs with larger size sign faces, advance road name signs, additional warning signs and upgrade the road edge sign posts</p> </td> <td> <p>$307,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Gladstone Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Round Hill Road - Section One<br /> 9kms from intersection with Fingerboard road to the North<br /> CAPTAINS CREEK</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of street name signs with larger size sign faces, advance road name signs, additional warning signs and upgrade the road-edge sign posts</p> </td> <td> <p>$225,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Gladstone Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Fort Street<br /> Albert Street<br /> MARYBOROUGH</p> </td> <td> <p>Repainting red stencil threshold treatment to improve contrast. Installing centre median island and give way signage, no parking lines on approaches and upgrading pedestrian ramps</p> </td> <td> <p>$107,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>London Road<br /> Stanbrough Road<br /> BELMONT</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of splitter islands, kerb and channel and re-grading and re-surfacing of the intersection. Upgrade traffic signs and linemarking and installation of pedestrian refuges</p> </td> <td> <p>$905,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Campbell Avenue<br /> Industrial Avenue<br /> WACOL</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a roundabout, splitter islands and medians, shared paths, re-surfacing of the intersection and revised traffic signs. Linemarking and transition ramps for cyclists will be provided as part of detail design</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,940,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Tunnel Ridge Road<br /> Between Kowald Road and Rose Road<br /> LANDSBOROUGH</p> </td> <td> <p>Remove, redesign and shield roadside hazards, minor shoulder widening and embankment works and installation of  barriers along sections with high embankment slopes</p> </td> <td> <p>$785,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Beechmond Road<br /> south of Farm Grove Road<br /> BEECHMONT</p> </td> <td> <p>Increase the existing horizontal radius of the curve from 85m to 150m on the south west section and from 55m to 130m on the northern section. Superelevate the curve and apply curve widening. Install one-metre sealed shoulder on both sides of the roadway</p> </td> <td> <p>$982,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Scenic Rim Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Greenlake Road<br /> near Evergreen Road<br /> ROCKYVIEW</p> </td> <td> <p>Change horizontal alignment - realign the road corridor to increase the horizontal curve radius and provide curve widening between approximately Ch2400 - Ch2700. Installation of w-beam guardrail on road side from no existing barrier</p> </td> <td> <p>$846,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Livingstone Shire Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Hunchy Road<br /> Between Hardings Road and Blackbutt Road<br /> HUNCHY</p> </td> <td> <p>Widen and seal overlay through the two curves, remove roadside hazards on both sides of the curves, reshape table drains with traversable slopes, reinstate property cross-overs and upgrade alignment warning signs</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,481,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Sir Fred Schonell Drive<br /> Coldridge Street<br /> ST LUCIA</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of right and left-turn lanes, medians, signalling, signage, linemarking and medians. Upgrade the intersection alignment and regrade and re-surface</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,428,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Mount Nebo Road<br /> 330m section near Jolly’s Lookout<br /> JOLLYS LOOKOUT</p> </td> <td> <p>Widen the road to provide wider lanes and sealed shoulders, install guardrail with underrun bars, curve alignment markers and edge lines to improve delineation around the curve</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,775,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Moreton Bay Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Thrower Drive<br /> Discrete site - Zebra crossing<br /> PALM BEACH</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrading the current zebra crossing to a signalised arrangement to address site constraints and reinforce crossing compliance</p> </td> <td> <p>$556,000</p> </td> <td> <p>City of Gold Coast</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Old Logan Road<br /> Addison Road<br /> CAMIRA</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrading signals at the right turns on Old Logan Road, removing left-turn slip lane from Addison Road and installation of fully controlled left turn. Relocating the primary lantern on the south bound approach</p> </td> <td> <p>$545,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Ipswich City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Yalangur-Lilyvale Road<br /> 3km section near Gowrie Little Plain Road<br /> GOWRIE LITTLE PLAIN</p> </td> <td> <p>Curve widening, new formed sealed shoulders, installation of line markings, road edge guideposts, Chevron Alignment Markers and removal of roadside hazards</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,300,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Toowoomba Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Angus Avenue<br /> Dalrymple Service Road<br /> HEATLEY</p> </td> <td> <p>Install a single-lane roundabout</p> </td> <td> <p>$735,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Townsville City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Ipswich Road<br /> Ponsonby Street<br /> ANNERLEY</p> </td> <td> <p>Re-alignment of centre median, installation of signalisation, relocate bus stop, installation of signage and linemarkings, amending the kerb side south bound lane, re-grading and resurfacing</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,950,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Moranbah Access Road<br /> Moranbah Airport section<br /> MORANBAH</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of full-width traversable clearzone, pavement markings, removal of roadside hazard and road widening</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,446,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Isaac Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Burrum Street<br /> Boreham Street<br /> BUNDABERG WEST</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrading signage, intersection delineation and line markings. Replace existing culvert railings, construct new off-road shared pathway, drain and road crossing facilities</p> </td> <td> <p>$366,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Bundaberg Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Bower Street<br /> Drysdale Street<br /> AYR</p> </td> <td> <p>Realignment of eastern approach from Drysdale Street to reduce intersection angle. Provision of painted median and installation of stop sign. Redirect pedestrian traffic away from intersection to eliminate need to cross four traffic lanes</p> </td> <td> <p>$195,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Burdekin Shire Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Freestone Road<br /> Charleys Gully Road<br /> FREESTONE</p> </td> <td> <p>Sealing of the Peters Road access and installation of linemarking and signage on Charleys Gully Road</p> </td> <td> <p>$21,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Amiens Road<br /> Bapaume Road<br /> AMIENS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of intersection linemarking and identification systems, painted chevrons, Raised Reflective Pavement Markers, linemarking and warning signage</p> </td> <td> <p>$26,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Amiens Road<br /> Minuti Lane<br /> AMIENS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a standard T Intersection, identification systems, linemarking and signage. The width of the existing intersection will be reduced with the horizontal alignment of Minuti Lane required to be realigned slightly</p> </td> <td> <p>$61,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Schoch Road<br /> Mardon Road<br /> ROSENTHAL HEIGHTS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of medians, Raised Reflective Pavement Markers, linemarking on Schoch Road, and linemarking on Mardon Road</p> </td> <td> <p>$20,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Pratten Street<br /> William Street<br /> WARWICK</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrade of delineation of intersection and installation of warning signs. This will include raised median islands on Pratten Street with replaced 'Give Way' signage and linemarking</p> </td> <td> <p>$43,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Freestone Creek Road<br /> between Freestone Road and Coopers Gully Road<br /> FREESTONE</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of warning signs, advisory speed signs additional guideposts on sections with restricted distance on crests and tight curves and batter slope flattening</p> </td> <td> <p>$85,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Churchill Drive<br /> Park Road<br /> WARWICK</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a three- leg roundabout to remove a number of conflict points</p> </td> <td> <p>$250,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Garnant Road<br /> Curve at chainage 2.6km<br /> GARNANT</p> </td> <td> <p>Install chevron alignment markers, curve warning signs, advisory speed signs, road edge guide post, road dividing line and Raised Reflective Pavement Markers</p> </td> <td> <p>$12,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Rockhampton Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Spa Water Road<br /> 350 metre section north of Gierkes Road<br /> IREDALE</p> </td> <td> <p>Superelevation improvements, pavement and bitumen sealing, linemarkings, installation of signs and devices and a new box culvert to improve drainage system</p> </td> <td> <p>$223,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Lockyer Valley Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Woodlands Road<br /> Rangeview Drive<br /> GATTON</p> </td> <td> <p>Offsetting the centreline, installing linemarking and signage, flag lighting to existing pole, kerb and channel associated drainage and painted median Island with pavement bars</p> </td> <td> <p>$138,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Lockyer Valley Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>South Yaamba Road<br /> Colliver Road<br /> ALTON DOWNS</p> </td> <td> <p>Reshaping of existing intersection, installation of curve warning signs, speed advisory signs, road edge guide posts and give way sign</p> </td> <td> <p>$80,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Rockhampton Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Local Roads of Regional Significance (LRRS) - Rural Roadside Hazard and Curve Delineation Program<br /> Various sections of roads<br /> ROMA</p> </td> <td> <p>Removal of trees and roadside hazards within the clear zone and disposal of vegetation to reduce the severity of outcome if a driver should lose control of their vehicle.  This will improve stopping sight distance around curves</p> </td> <td> <p>$100,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Maranoa Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <p> </p> McCormack Federal funding to fix 51 Black Spots in Queensland Christmas Island in focus for research opportunities https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/marino/media-release/christmas-island-focus-research-opportunities <p>Scientific organisations, universities and Australian Government representatives will gather in Canberra today to discuss opportunities to capitalise on Christmas Island’s (CI) unique ecosystems, species and conservation value. </p> <p>The Research Roundtable, being held in Canberra on 28 February, will comprise scientific experts as well as local leaders from Christmas Island and the neighbouring Cocos (Keeling) Islands. </p> <p>In December last year, I announced a new economic diversification package for CI. </p> <p>As outlined in the community-led <a href="https://www.regional.gov.au/territories/publications/files/CCS1681_IOTRDO_CI_Strategic_Plan_FINAL.pdf">Our Christmas Island 2030 Strategic Plan</a>, the CI community’s goals for the future include opportunities for international education, research and development to capitalise on the Island’s extraordinary environment.</p> <p>In line with this aspiration, the Research Roundtable is a key element of the Government’s plan to help to layer and diversify the local economy. Funding has also been provided to develop a business case for a potential research centre to be established on the Island. </p> <p>As many of you will be aware, CI attracts bird watchers and nature lovers from all over the world. It is home to one of Australia’s most unique national parks which provides habitat for endangered, vulnerable, threatened and migratory species. There are more than 250 endemic species on CI. CI is also known to many as the ‘Kingdom of the Crabs’ due to the diverse array of land crabs, including the robber, or coconut crab – the largest land crab in the world. The marine zone of the Park supports more than 600 fish species, including migratory whale sharks, and other species such as threatened green and hawksbill turtles. </p> <p>This gives CI a unique and logical natural competitive advantage in research and education opportunities, as part of a broader economic strategy.</p> <p>Scientific experts, local representatives and universities with research expertise and capability in island ecology, species management and conservation, marine ecology, agriculture and tropical medicine have been invited to attend the Roundtable to share ideas and, collectively, identify CI’s untapped potential for scientific research and education. </p> <p>A key focus of discussions will be identifying research opportunities and developing a long term strategy to support research and education. The Roundtable will also discuss the potential focus, scope and use of a research centre on the island.</p> <p>As I said during my visit to CI last year, the Australian Government is committed to helping the community diversify the local economy by encouraging collaborations and partnerships to support research activities. </p> <p>I look forward to reporting back to you on the outcomes from the Roundtable and planned next steps, including community involvement as we move forward.</p> <p>The Australian Government’s economic diversification package complements actions already under way, including a <a href="https://www.regional.gov.au/territories/Christmas/strategic-assessment/">Strategic Assessment of Christmas Island</a>, a review of tourism and development of a Tourism Action Plan, along with delivery of initiatives in the Strategic Plan. <br />  </p> Marino Christmas Island in focus for research opportunities Federal funding to fix 51 Black Spots in Queensland https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/buchholz/media-release/federal-funding-fix-51-black-spots-queensland <p>Fifty one dangerous crash sites in Queensland will be substantially improved under the latest round of the Federal Liberal and Nationals Government’s Black Spot Program.</p> <p>Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the state would receive $25.3 million under the Black Spot Program’s 2020–21 funding round.</p> <p>“The Federal Government’s record investment into upgrading roads is saving lives right across the nation,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>“No matter where you live, we want to help get Australians home to their families sooner and safer – especially regional Australians who make up about a quarter of our national population but account for more than half of the roads deaths.</p> <p>“The Black Spot Program funds important safety measures such as traffic signals and roundabouts at locations where a number of serious crashes have occurred.</p> <p>“The 51 Black Spot projects across Queensland will therefore make an important contribution towards reducing serious injuries and deaths on our roads.”</p> <p>Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport Scott Buchholz said this investment in Black Spot projects would deliver safer roads in local government areas throughout the state.</p> <p>“The Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics has found Black Spot projects reduce the number of crashes causing death and injury by an average of 30 per cent,” Mr Buchholz said.</p> <p>“The high-priority locations we are funding have seen a total of 12 fatal and 233 crashes causing injuries recorded over the past five years.”</p> <p>The panel which reviews priorities for the program includes representatives from the Queensland Police Service, Royal Automobile Club of Queensland, Queensland Trucking Association, Bicycle Queensland, Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety (Queensland University of Technology) and state and local government.</p> <p>The Federal Liberal and Nationals Government has committed $1 billion to the Black Spot Program from 2013–14 to 2022–23 to improve road safety across the nation.</p> <p>For more information on the Australian Government’s Black Spot Program, or to nominate a black spot, visit: <a href="http://investment.infrastructure.gov.au/funding/blackspots/">http://investment.infrastructure.gov.au/funding/blackspots/</a>.</p> <p>A list of funded projects is available below.</p> <p> </p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr McCormack</strong> – Hannah Maguire 0429 920 254</p> <p><strong>Mr Buchholz</strong> – Scott O’Connell 0413 424 384</p> <p> </p> <h2>Queensland Black Spot Program 2020–21</h2> <div> <table> <thead> <tr> <td>  <p><strong>Project Name</strong></p> </td> <td> <p><strong>Proposed Treatment</strong></p> </td> <td> <p><strong>Australian Government Contribution</strong></p> </td> <td> <p><strong>Council</strong></p> </td> </tr> </thead> <tbody> <tr> <td> <p>Petrie Creek Road<br /> Plantation Retirement Resort - Paynter River<br /> ROSEMOUNT</p> </td> <td> <p>Reconstruct existing curve with revised vertical grading, incorporating curve widening, superelevation, sealed shoulders, signage, enhanced delineation, chevron alignment markers, linemarking, guide posts and reflective raised pavement markers</p> </td> <td> <p>$240,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Pamela Street<br /> Trainor Street<br /> MOUNT ISA</p> </td> <td> <p>Construction of a roundabout</p> </td> <td> <p>$100,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Mount Isa City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Shea Road<br /> 50m south of Theodore Road Intersection<br /> KURWONGBAH</p> </td> <td> <p>Reconstruct and widen Shea Road at the sharp narrow bend on the crest of the hill. Changing the horizontal and vertical alignment together with delineation enhancement</p> </td> <td> <p>$298,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Moreton Bay Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Sheridan Street<br /> Aplin Street<br /> CAIRNS</p> </td> <td> <p>Construction of a short right-turn lane for Aplin Street, western approach, signal modification, controlled right-turn phases for each approach and mast arm installations on Sheridan Street and Aplin Street</p> </td> <td> <p>$230,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Cairns Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Exeter Street<br /> Tavistock Street<br /> TORQUAY</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of painted Chevron on Tavistock Street over crest, painted threshold on minor legs, centre median giveway signage on both minor road legs, advanced warning signage and linemarking and upgrading pedestrian ramps</p> </td> <td> <p>$80,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Paradise Parade<br /> Falkinder Avenue<br /> PARADISE POINT</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of one-lane roundabout and new warning signs</p> </td> <td> <p>$377,500</p> </td> <td> <p>City of Gold Coast</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Mount Stuart Road<br /> Length of Road<br /> ROSENEATH</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of long steep winding climb and descent motorcycle warning signs with advisory speed signs, chevron alignment markers, paint edge lines, guide posts, install guard rail and rub rails</p> </td> <td> <p>$808,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Townsville City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Pamela Street<br /> Deighton Street<br /> MORNINGTON</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a dumbbell type roundabout. The new design incorporates on-road cycle lanes westbound on Pamela Street, northbound on Deighton/Isa Street and southeast bound on Isa Street due to space constraints</p> </td> <td> <p>$250,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Mount Isa City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Digger Street<br /> McKenzie Street<br /> CAIRNS</p> </td> <td> <p>Construction of a roundabout and installation of BAZ (Bicycle Awareness Zones), approach speed limit signage,  on-road-off-road transition and upgrade of street lighting</p> </td> <td> <p>$360,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Cairns Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Exeter Street<br /> Bideford Street<br /> TORQUAY</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a centre median island, signage, yellow no parking lines and upgrading the pedestrian ramps and street lighting</p> </td> <td> <p>$83,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Keong Road<br /> Dawn Street<br /> ALBANY CREEK</p> </td> <td> <p>Install painted channelized right-turn lane, chevron linemarkings, RRPMs, new yellow line, new edge lines and continuity line. Reconstruction and widening of four driveways to allow easy access and to accommodate the right-turn lane</p> </td> <td> <p>$45,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Moreton Bay Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Albert Street<br /> John Street<br /> MARYBOROUGH</p> </td> <td> <p>Repaint red stencil threshold treatment and install centre median island and giveway signs, yellow no parking lines on approaches and main road, upgrade pedestrian ramps and install pedestrian refuge on minor legs</p> </td> <td> <p>$108,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Glenview Road<br /> Nina Drive - Leeding Road<br /> GLENVIEW</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of vehicle-activated signs, chevron alignment markers, guide posts, chevron marker signs and safety barriers. Replace splayed terminal ends with compliant terminals and removal of trees on the inside of the curve. Replace fencing with weld mesh fence panels</p> </td> <td> <p>$385,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Lindsay Road<br /> Tulip Lane - Jones Road<br /> BUDERIM</p> </td> <td> <p>Widening, removal of roadside hazards, upgrading alignment and installation of warning signs and chevron alignment markers</p> </td> <td> <p>$444,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Cedar Pocket Road<br /> Gap Road<br /> CEDAR POCKET</p> </td> <td> <p>Clearing roadside vegetation, installation of chevron alignment markers, guardrails, linemarking, end treatments and warning signs. Reduce speed limit from existing 80 km/h to 60 km/h and realign and widen sealed pavement at two locations</p> </td> <td> <p>$755,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Gympie Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Kingsthorpe - Haden Road<br /> 1.5km section<br /> BOODUA</p> </td> <td> <p>Improvements to clear zones, curve widening, new formed sealed shoulders, installation of line markings, guideposts, and CAMs</p> </td> <td> <p>$627,575</p> </td> <td> <p>Toowoomba Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Spiegelhauer Road<br /> In Paluma Range National Park<br /> CRYSTAL CREEK</p> </td> <td> <p>Correcting the road alignments, sealing, installation of warning signs and modification of the one-lane floodway</p> </td> <td> <p>$659,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Townsville City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Raceview Street<br /> Robertson Road<br /> EASTERN HEIGHTS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of new traffic signals. A single mast arm is to be installed however directing both directions on the single post due to obstructions through the intersection</p> </td> <td> <p>$75,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Ipswich City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Batchlers Road<br /> Between Moore Park Road and Loeskow Street<br /> GOOBURRUM</p> </td> <td> <p>Realignment of the curve and vertical alignment on approach. Widen sealed road section and seal unsealed section. Clear vegetation and install guideposts with reflectors, curve alignment markers with advisory speed signage</p> </td> <td> <p>$308,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Bundaberg Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Exeter Street<br /> Honiton Street<br /> TORQUAY</p> </td> <td> <p>Install centre median island and give way signs, pedestrian refuges on minor legs, yellow lines and upgrade pedestrian ramps and street lighting</p> </td> <td> <p>$95,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Round Hill Road - Section Two<br /> 3.2kms from intersection with Captain Cook Drive<br /> ROUND HILL</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of street name signs with larger size sign faces, advance road name signs, additional warning signs and upgrade the road edge sign posts</p> </td> <td> <p>$307,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Gladstone Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Round Hill Road - Section One<br /> 9kms from intersection with Fingerboard road to the North<br /> CAPTAINS CREEK</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of street name signs with larger size sign faces, advance road name signs, additional warning signs and upgrade the road-edge sign posts</p> </td> <td> <p>$225,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Gladstone Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Fort Street<br /> Albert Street<br /> MARYBOROUGH</p> </td> <td> <p>Repainting red stencil threshold treatment to improve contrast. Installing centre median island and give way signage, no parking lines on approaches and upgrading pedestrian ramps</p> </td> <td> <p>$107,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Fraser Coast Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>London Road<br /> Stanbrough Road<br /> BELMONT</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of splitter islands, kerb and channel and re-grading and re-surfacing of the intersection. Upgrade traffic signs and linemarking and installation of pedestrian refuges</p> </td> <td> <p>$905,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Campbell Avenue<br /> Industrial Avenue<br /> WACOL</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a roundabout, splitter islands and medians, shared paths, re-surfacing of the intersection and revised traffic signs. Linemarking and transition ramps for cyclists will be provided as part of detail design</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,940,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Tunnel Ridge Road<br /> Between Kowald Road and Rose Road<br /> LANDSBOROUGH</p> </td> <td> <p>Remove, redesign and shield roadside hazards, minor shoulder widening and embankment works and installation of  barriers along sections with high embankment slopes</p> </td> <td> <p>$785,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Beechmond Road<br /> south of Farm Grove Road<br /> BEECHMONT</p> </td> <td> <p>Increase the existing horizontal radius of the curve from 85m to 150m on the south west section and from 55m to 130m on the northern section. Superelevate the curve and apply curve widening. Install one-metre sealed shoulder on both sides of the roadway</p> </td> <td> <p>$982,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Scenic Rim Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Greenlake Road<br /> near Evergreen Road<br /> ROCKYVIEW</p> </td> <td> <p>Change horizontal alignment - realign the road corridor to increase the horizontal curve radius and provide curve widening between approximately Ch2400 - Ch2700. Installation of w-beam guardrail on road side from no existing barrier</p> </td> <td> <p>$846,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Livingstone Shire Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Hunchy Road<br /> Between Hardings Road and Blackbutt Road<br /> HUNCHY</p> </td> <td> <p>Widen and seal overlay through the two curves, remove roadside hazards on both sides of the curves, reshape table drains with traversable slopes, reinstate property cross-overs and upgrade alignment warning signs</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,481,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Sunshine Coast Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Sir Fred Schonell Drive<br /> Coldridge Street<br /> ST LUCIA</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of right and left-turn lanes, medians, signalling, signage, linemarking and medians. Upgrade the intersection alignment and regrade and re-surface</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,428,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Mount Nebo Road<br /> 330m section near Jolly’s Lookout<br /> JOLLYS LOOKOUT</p> </td> <td> <p>Widen the road to provide wider lanes and sealed shoulders, install guardrail with underrun bars, curve alignment markers and edge lines to improve delineation around the curve</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,775,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Moreton Bay Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Thrower Drive<br /> Discrete site - Zebra crossing<br /> PALM BEACH</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrading the current zebra crossing to a signalised arrangement to address site constraints and reinforce crossing compliance</p> </td> <td> <p>$556,000</p> </td> <td> <p>City of Gold Coast</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Old Logan Road<br /> Addison Road<br /> CAMIRA</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrading signals at the right turns on Old Logan Road, removing left-turn slip lane from Addison Road and installation of fully controlled left turn. Relocating the primary lantern on the south bound approach</p> </td> <td> <p>$545,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Ipswich City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Yalangur-Lilyvale Road<br /> 3km section near Gowrie Little Plain Road<br /> GOWRIE LITTLE PLAIN</p> </td> <td> <p>Curve widening, new formed sealed shoulders, installation of line markings, road edge guideposts, Chevron Alignment Markers and removal of roadside hazards</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,300,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Toowoomba Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Angus Avenue<br /> Dalrymple Service Road<br /> HEATLEY</p> </td> <td> <p>Install a single-lane roundabout</p> </td> <td> <p>$735,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Townsville City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Ipswich Road<br /> Ponsonby Street<br /> ANNERLEY</p> </td> <td> <p>Re-alignment of centre median, installation of signalisation, relocate bus stop, installation of signage and linemarkings, amending the kerb side south bound lane, re-grading and resurfacing</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,950,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Brisbane City Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Moranbah Access Road<br /> Moranbah Airport section<br /> MORANBAH</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of full-width traversable clearzone, pavement markings, removal of roadside hazard and road widening</p> </td> <td> <p>$1,446,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Isaac Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Burrum Street<br /> Boreham Street<br /> BUNDABERG WEST</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrading signage, intersection delineation and line markings. Replace existing culvert railings, construct new off-road shared pathway, drain and road crossing facilities</p> </td> <td> <p>$366,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Bundaberg Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Bower Street<br /> Drysdale Street<br /> AYR</p> </td> <td> <p>Realignment of eastern approach from Drysdale Street to reduce intersection angle. Provision of painted median and installation of stop sign. Redirect pedestrian traffic away from intersection to eliminate need to cross four traffic lanes</p> </td> <td> <p>$195,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Burdekin Shire Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Freestone Road<br /> Charleys Gully Road<br /> FREESTONE</p> </td> <td> <p>Sealing of the Peters Road access and installation of linemarking and signage on Charleys Gully Road</p> </td> <td> <p>$21,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Amiens Road<br /> Bapaume Road<br /> AMIENS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of intersection linemarking and identification systems, painted chevrons, Raised Reflective Pavement Markers, linemarking and warning signage</p> </td> <td> <p>$26,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Amiens Road<br /> Minuti Lane<br /> AMIENS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a standard T Intersection, identification systems, linemarking and signage. The width of the existing intersection will be reduced with the horizontal alignment of Minuti Lane required to be realigned slightly</p> </td> <td> <p>$61,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Schoch Road<br /> Mardon Road<br /> ROSENTHAL HEIGHTS</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of medians, Raised Reflective Pavement Markers, linemarking on Schoch Road, and linemarking on Mardon Road</p> </td> <td> <p>$20,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Pratten Street<br /> William Street<br /> WARWICK</p> </td> <td> <p>Upgrade of delineation of intersection and installation of warning signs. This will include raised median islands on Pratten Street with replaced 'Give Way' signage and linemarking</p> </td> <td> <p>$43,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Freestone Creek Road<br /> between Freestone Road and Coopers Gully Road<br /> FREESTONE</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of warning signs, advisory speed signs additional guideposts on sections with restricted distance on crests and tight curves and batter slope flattening</p> </td> <td> <p>$85,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Churchill Drive<br /> Park Road<br /> WARWICK</p> </td> <td> <p>Installation of a three- leg roundabout to remove a number of conflict points</p> </td> <td> <p>$250,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Southern Downs Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Garnant Road<br /> Curve at chainage 2.6km<br /> GARNANT</p> </td> <td> <p>Install chevron alignment markers, curve warning signs, advisory speed signs, road edge guide post, road dividing line and Raised Reflective Pavement Markers</p> </td> <td> <p>$12,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Rockhampton Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Spa Water Road<br /> 350 metre section north of Gierkes Road<br /> IREDALE</p> </td> <td> <p>Superelevation improvements, pavement and bitumen sealing, linemarkings, installation of signs and devices and a new box culvert to improve drainage system</p> </td> <td> <p>$223,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Lockyer Valley Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Woodlands Road<br /> Rangeview Drive<br /> GATTON</p> </td> <td> <p>Offsetting the centreline, installing linemarking and signage, flag lighting to existing pole, kerb and channel associated drainage and painted median Island with pavement bars</p> </td> <td> <p>$138,500</p> </td> <td> <p>Lockyer Valley Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>South Yaamba Road<br /> Colliver Road<br /> ALTON DOWNS</p> </td> <td> <p>Reshaping of existing intersection, installation of curve warning signs, speed advisory signs, road edge guide posts and give way sign</p> </td> <td> <p>$80,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Rockhampton Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> <tr> <td> <p>Local Roads of Regional Significance (LRRS) - Rural Roadside Hazard and Curve Delineation Program<br /> Various sections of roads<br /> ROMA</p> </td> <td> <p>Removal of trees and roadside hazards within the clear zone and disposal of vegetation to reduce the severity of outcome if a driver should lose control of their vehicle.  This will improve stopping sight distance around curves</p> </td> <td> <p>$100,000</p> </td> <td> <p>Maranoa Regional Council</p> </td> </tr> </tbody> </table> </div> <p> </p> Buchholz Federal funding to fix 51 Black Spots in Queensland Lockyer Valley Inland Rail business cases fast tracked https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/mccormack/media-release/lockyer-valley-inland-rail-business-cases-fast-tracked <p>Investigating the viability of the Lockyer Valley Inland Rail connection is one of four projects selected to be fast tracked as part of the Inland Rail Interface Improvement Program (II Program).</p> <p>The Liberal and Nationals Government has committed $44 million to the Inland Rail II Program to assess the cost and benefits of various additional connections to the national freight rail network including investigating ways to build industry and supply chain resilience and improve market access for farmers and manufacturers through enhanced connection to Inland Rail.</p> <p>Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Lockyer Valley is traditionally one of Australia’s strongest horticulture producing regions.</p> <p>“The agricultural output of the Lockyer Valley typically exceeds $285 million per year, with the region producing roughly 20 per cent of the total vegetable production in Queensland and around 5 per cent of Australia’s total vegetable production,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>“Like so many others, farmers and producers in the Lockyer are battling the enduring impacts of fire and drought and they need to know they have access to a reliable, interconnected, national freight network that will deliver their produce to markets when and where it is needed.</p> <p>“Inland Rail has always been about far more than building a rail line – it’s about investing in our regions and connecting Australians through fast, reliable freight that delivers the food we eat, the furniture in our homes and the clothes we wear,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>Under the II Program, strategic business cases will identify opportunities to support more productive rail-based supply chains at regional centres and help build capacity on key country rail lines.</p> <p>Minister for Finance Mathias Cormann said the Government continued to implement its plans to build a stronger economy and create more jobs and was very happy that the Lockyer Valley component under the Infrastructure Investment Program would be fast tracked.</p> <p>“Better freight connectivity and efficiency helps drive stronger economic growth and will maximise the returns for our national productivity which we know Inland Rail will deliver,” Mr Cormann said.</p> <p>“Transport costs are a significant overhead for Australian businesses which inevitably are then passed on to consumers. By maximising the community and business connections to Inland Rail, our investments to improve the interface with existing infrastructure ensures more people can enjoy high quality competitively priced and locally grown produce.”</p> <p>Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communities and Local Government Mark Coulton said the fast tracked program reflects the commitment of The Nationals in Government to provide opportunities for regional communities.</p> <p>“We want to help regions play to their strengths by removing the barriers to growth and by investing in productivity enhancements that build resilient local economies,” Mr Coulton said.</p> <p>“Enhancing supply chain efficiencies means more money stays in the pockets of local producers, building more resilient communities and industries. Inland Rail provides the opportunities for cost savings, with the fast and reliable freight transport option placing our products on supermarket shelves across Australia and beyond our shores.</p> <p>“We want to build the infrastructure – infrastructure such as Inland Rail – that can make a real difference for regional and rural Australians.</p> <p>For more information on Inland Rail and the Interface Improvement Program, visit <a href="http://www.inlandrail.gov.au/">www.InlandRail.gov.au</a>.</p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr McCormack</strong></p> <p>Tess Salmon 0467 740 017</p> <p><strong>Senator Cormann</strong></p> <p>Karen Wu 0428 350 139</p> <p><strong>Mr Coulton </strong></p> <p>Steph Nicholls 0417 314 920</p> McCormack Lockyer Valley Inland Rail business cases fast tracked New standard to fight fraudulent number porting https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/media-release/new-standard-fight-fraudulent-number-porting <p>In October 2019, Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, issued a formal direction to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to make new rules mandating stronger identity verification processes before mobile numbers can be ported.</p> <p>Mobile number fraud is a form of identity theft where scammers steal personal details to gain control of a person’s mobile phone number. On average, victims lose more than $10,000 through this type of fraud.</p> <p>The ACMA has set a new industry standard that will require mobile providers to implement improved verification processes (including multifactor authentication) before transferring customers’ phone numbers from one provider to another.</p> <p>The Telecommunications (Mobile Number Pre-porting Additional Identify Verification) Industry Standard 2020 aims to prevent fraudulent number porting to stop identity theft that enables scammers to illegitimately access bank accounts, personal information and other consumer service accounts.</p> <p>“Mobile providers will have until 30 April 2020 to comply with the ACMA’s new standard designed to protect Australians from fraud and identity theft,” Minister Fletcher said.</p> <p>“The ACMA will actively monitor compliance with the industry standard and has enforcement powers to issue formal warnings or civil penalties of up to $250,000 to non-compliant mobile providers. The ACMA will have my full support in pursuing non-compliant mobile providers to ensure Australians are kept safe from scammers.</p> <p>“I thank the mobile providers that have already put these measures in place and I make it very clear that I expect the others to comply with the standard by the end of April.”</p> <p>The Government is committed to taking action against scams perpetrated over phone networks. Last year Minister Fletcher announced an <a href="https://www.minister.communications.gov.au/minister/paul-fletcher/news/action-plan-combat-phone-scams">action plan</a> to combat phone scams.</p> <p>For more information about scams in Australia or to report a scam visit the <a href="https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/">Scamwatch</a> website.</p> <p><strong>Media contact:</strong></p> <p>Brad Hatch | 0448 162 679 | <a href="mailto:Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au">Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au</a></p> <p>Rebecca Papillo | 0439 892 771 | <a href="mailto:Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au">Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au</a></p> Fletcher New standard to fight fraudulent number porting Infrastructure Australia's 2020 Priority List welcomed https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/mccormack/media-release/infrastructure-australias-2020-priority-list-welcomed <p>The Federal Liberal and Nationals Government has welcomed today’s release of Infrastructure Australia’s (IA) 2020 update to its Infrastructure Priority List, which reaffirms the Government’s delivery of the infrastructure Australia needs and deserves.</p> <p>Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said IA’s List gives Governments independent, expert input on where they should be directing infrastructure spending.</p> <p>“The 2020 Infrastructure Priority List delivers the largest list of projects to date – including 147 nationally significant proposals across a range of sectors including transport, energy, water, communications, housing and education and about $58 billion worth of projects,” Mr McCormack said.</p> <p>“This year’s list provides a new snapshot to guide infrastructure investment across the nation over the next 15 years.</p> <p>“The list focuses on delivering regional and urban projects to support a growing population, to meet the national freight challenge and get Australians home to their loved ones sooner and safer.</p> <p>“Strategic advice and expert planning is critical to help guide the Liberal and Nationals Government’s 10-year, $100 billion infrastructure plan which is already boosting the economy and helping Australians reach their destinations more quickly and safely.</p> <p>“The Government has already committed to many of the major congestion-busting initiatives appearing for the first time on the Priority List.</p> <p>“This includes projects in Australia’s biggest capital cities as well as those which promote growth across regional Australia.”</p> <p>Projects on the list already supported by the Government include:</p> <ul> <li>$155 million for the Nowra Bridge project</li> <li>$500 million for the NSW section of the Princes Highway Corridor, with investment decisions to be informed by the now completed Princes Highway Corridor Strategy</li> <li>$225 million for the Frankston to Baxter Rail Upgrade</li> <li>$269 million for Gold Coast Light Rail Stage 3A</li> <li>$375 million for the M1 Pacific Motorway – Eight Mile Plains to Daisy Hill upgrade</li> <li>$500 million for the M1 Pacific Motorway – Varsity Lakes to Tugun upgrade</li> <li>$130 million for the Bruce Highway – Deception Bay Road Interchange upgrade</li> <li>$530 million for the Bruce Highway – Caboolture-Bribie Island Road to Steve Irwin Way upgrade</li> <li>$241 million for the Bruce Highway – Maroochydore Road and Mons Road Interchanges upgrade</li> <li>$800 million for the Bruce Highway – Cooroy to Curra – Section D upgrade</li> <li>$384 million for the Bruce Highway – Cairns Southern Access – Stage 3 – Edmonton to Gordonvale upgrade</li> <li>$120 million for the Bowen Basin Service Link – Walkerston Bypass project</li> <li>$220 million for the Great Northern Highway – Bindoon Bypass project</li> <li>$70 million to upgrade the Wheatbelt Secondary Freight Network</li> </ul> <p>Ends.</p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr McCormack</strong> – Tess Salmon 0467 740 017 | Hannah Maguire 0429 920 254</p> <p> </p> McCormack Infrastructure Australia's 2020 Priority List welcomed Funding support for Indigenous languages and arts https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/media-release/funding-support-indigenous-languages-and-arts <p>Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, is calling for community-based organisations to apply for funding through the 2020-21 Indigenous Languages and Arts program competitive grant opportunity.</p> <p>“The Morrison Government is committed to supporting Indigenous languages and arts and the role they play in preserving Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural heritage so that it can be passed on to future generations,” Minister Fletcher said.</p> <p>“The 2019 International Year of Indigenous Languages has highlighted how important cultural expression through Indigenous languages and arts are for individual wellbeing, providing a sense of identity and community for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.</p> <p>“Preserving languages and supporting traditional and contemporary Indigenous art forms is important for the sake of our culture here in Australia, and also to help promote the work of our talented Indigenous artists and performers internationally.”</p> <p>The Indigenous Languages and Arts funding aims to empower Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to preserve and teach Indigenous languages and arts, build a strong sense of cultural identity and wellbeing, and increase recognition in the wider Australian community of Indigenous languages and arts.</p> <p>The Government invests around $20 million annually to support Indigenous Australians express, preserve and maintain their culture through language and arts activities.</p> <p>Applications close on 6 April 2020 at 11.59 pm (AEDT).</p> <p>For more information and the guidelines visit: <a href="http://www.arts.gov.au/ILA">www.arts.gov.au/ILA</a></p> <h2>Media contact:</h2> <p>Brad Hatch | 0448 162 679 | <a href="mailto:Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au">Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au</a></p> <p>Rebecca Papillo | 0439 892 771 | <a href="mailto:Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au">Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au</a></p> Fletcher Funding support for Indigenous languages and arts Message from the Hon Nola Marino MP – Thank you Christmas Island https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/marino/community-update/message-hon-nola-marino-mp-thank-you-christmas-island <p>Dear Christmas Island (CI) residents,</p> <p>On behalf of the Australian Government, I extend you my warmest thanks and acknowledgement for your role in assisting your fellow Australians to return home from Wuhan safely amid the threat of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).</p> <p>The Australian Government’s response was swift and multi-faceted, with a range of agencies, led by the Australian Border Force, and including the Australian Federal Police, Australian Defence Force and AUSMAT (Australian Medical Assistance Team) working with the Departments of Health, Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Home Affairs, to bring these vulnerable Australians home.</p> <p>The CI community spirit which the evacuees, and the medical and support staff witnessed, is a credit to each and every one of you. To those impacted by this global health emergency, Christmas Island offered a safe haven during their quarantine period.  </p> <p>I would like to acknowledge the leadership of the Administrator of CI, Mrs Natasha Griggs, her staff and also the staff of the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications (the Department), which administers services to the local community on CI.</p> <p>As part of the CI community, the Department’s cohort of local staff at the Indian Ocean Territories Administration (IOTA), as well as staff in Perth, and Canberra, worked alongside their Australian Government colleagues to ensure no impact on local services was experienced during this time, and to keep you informed. </p> <p>Thank you to our local CI Maintenance Services workforce, the contractors at Christmas Island Airport, staff at the IOT Health Service, to the teachers and students at Christmas Island District High School, and to everyone who made this experience a little bit easier and brighter for everyone.</p> <p>While the quarantine period for the two groups of evacuees accommodated on Christmas Island has finished and they are now home, their memories of your kindness remain.</p> <p>Your caring support, community spirit and unique natural environment has been showcased across the nation, and around the world.</p> Marino Message from the Hon Nola Marino MP – Thank you Christmas Island Protecting Australia's interest in Holden cultural history https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/media-release/protecting-australias-interest-holden-cultural-history <p>The Australian Government has sought the commitment of General Motors (GM) to comply with its obligations to protect and preserve culturally and historically significant objects following the company’s decision to close operations in Australia.</p> <p>The Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said Holden has been an iconic part of Australian life for many decades and its heritage is of immense importance.</p> <p>“Many Australians have rightly expressed concern that the Holden business, now being shut down by its US parent company General Motors, holds extensive collections of historically and culturally significant motor vehicles and materials associated with the history of automotive manufacturing in Australia,” Minister Fletcher said.</p> <p>The Office for the Arts in the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications has commenced discussions on this matter with Holden over recent days.</p> <p>“I am encouraged by Holden’s statement that it would preserve key heritage vehicles and that it is working through plans with General Motors and local partners and institutions,” Minister Fletcher said.</p> <p>“The provisions of the Protection of Movable Cultural Heritage Act 1986 will cover much of the material in these collections, which includes heritage vehicles, photos, documents and plans. It is likely that many items would be protected under the Act and may not be exported from Australia without a permit.</p> <p>“The Government expects to see a clear plan from GM about how this significant material is to be preserved and maintained in Australia – which could potentially include it being made available to institutions such as the National Museum of Australia, the National Library of Australia, State government museums or privately-owned museums. As part of this plan, GM should also make sustainable arrangements for funding the preservation and storage of this material.</p> <p>“The initial response from Holden has been a constructive one and I look forward to further engagement,” Minister Fletcher said.</p> <h2>Media contact:</h2> <p>Brad Hatch | 0448 162 679 | <a href="mailto:Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au">Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au</a></p> <p>Rebecca Papillo | 0439 892 771 | <a href="mailto:Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au">Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au</a></p> Fletcher Protecting Australia's interest in Holden cultural history Australia's first City Deal continues to deliver for Townsville https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/tudge/media-release/australias-first-city-deal-continues-deliver-townsville-0 <p>The Townsville City Deal continues to shape a bold new future for Townsville with significant progress on major infrastructure projects that create jobs and improve liveability, according to the third annual report on the Deal released today.</p> <p>Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said progress over the past 12 months on Australia’s first City Deal showed the power of the Deals to change the face of a city.</p> <p>“Tailor-made to meet the needs of each location, City Deals harness the collective muscle of investment and resources from all three levels of government.” Minister Tudge said.</p> <p>“This report shows the benefits of delivering real projects that employ local people and support the economy.”</p> <p>Minister Tudge also noted the importance of the ongoing delivery of the City Deal throughout 2019 in helping local industry and enterprise to recover from the catastrophic North Queensland floods.</p> <p>“The Townsville community has shown incredible leadership and resilience in recovering from the devastating effects of flooding in early 2019.”</p> <p>The City Deal has played a critical supporting role through the economic stimulus delivered by the infrastructure projects currently underway as part of the Deal.</p> <p>Projects such as the $195 million Haughton Pipeline Stage 2, which is fully funded by the Australian Government, will create almost 700 construction jobs, 30 new ongoing full-time positions, and increase agricultural output in the region by $3 million per year.</p> <p>Queensland Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships Jackie Trad said the City Deal had helped Townsville take significant strides towards a secure and prosperous economic future and making the city an attractive place to live, work and visit.</p> <p>“The City Deal has secured full funding for game-changing infrastructure projects, such as the Port of Townsville Channel Upgrade, which will help to unlock the economic potential of Townsville as the largest city of North Queensland,” Deputy Premier Trad said.</p> <p>“I’m also incredibly excited about the impending opening of the Queensland Country Bank Stadium, which has engaged almost 500 local businesses in the extended supply chain and employed more than 2000 people during construction, including a huge number of Townsville locals and Indigenous Australians.”</p> <p>Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill joined Minister Tudge and Deputy Premier Trad in acknowledging the success of the City Deal, particularly its focus on water security, as well as in attracting investment and economic activity to Townsville.</p> <p>“The City Deal has now delivered full funding for both stages of the Haughton Pipeline, giving Townsville an uninterrupted water supply from the Burdekin River, which will secure the city’s water supply for decades to come,” Cr Hill said.</p> <p>“The City Deal has also led to a range of flow-on projects in the city, attracting both government and private funding, such as the Townsville waterfront promenade upgrade, North Queensland Cowboys high performance centre, Flinders Lane development, and Doubletree by Hilton hotel.”</p> <p>The Federal Member for Herbert said “the City Deal is a great example of all three levels of Government working together for the benefit of the community.”</p> <p>“It’s imperative that the leaders of our community continue to work together to deliver the projects that our city and region so desperately need. Projects such as these not only deliver jobs but importantly deliver the critical infrastructure needed for our City’s future growth and prosperity,” Phillip Thompson said.</p> <p>The Townsville City Deal – signed in 2016 – is a 15-year agreement to transform the city’s economy and central business district, and the Australian Government, Queensland Government and Townsville City Council will continue to work together to deliver the commitments in the Deal.</p> <p>The findings of a formal review of the first three years of the Deal, as originally committed at the signing of the Deal, will be released later in 2020.</p> <p>The Annual Progress Report is available at: <a href="https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/cities/city-deals/townsville/">https://www.infrastructure.gov.au/cities/city-deals/townsville/</a></p> <h2><strong>Media Contacts:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Minister Tudge</strong> – Michael Bennett 0434 782 923</p> <p><strong>Deputy Premier Trad</strong> – Geoff Breusch 0417 272 875</p> <p><strong>Cr Hill</strong> – Scott Chandler 0468 595 276</p> Tudge Australia's first City Deal continues to deliver for Townsville Have your say on the Regional Connectivity Program guidelines https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/media-release/have-your-say-regional-connectivity-program-guidelines <p>The Coalition Government has today commenced the next stage of consultation on the $53 million Regional Connectivity Program to improve digital connectivity in regional and rural Australia.</p> <p>The Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, and Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government, the Hon Mark Coulton MP, today released the draft program guidelines for a final period of public consultation.</p> <p>The Regional Connectivity Program will provide competitive grants allowing investment in projects that improve internet accessibility in regional, rural and remote communities.</p> <p>"We recognise that access to telecommunications services are vital for people living in the bush and that different communities have varying needs. The Regional Connectivity Program prioritises bespoke solutions rather than a 'one-size-fits-all' approach," Minister Fletcher said.</p> <p>"The program aims to complement the National Broadband Network (NBN) with tailored mobile and broadband services to support local agriculture, tourism and resources sectors, and help address health and educational priorities."</p> <p>Minister Coulton said it is important that all views are heard in the design of the final program guidelines, including from communities, all levels of government, consumer groups and telcos.</p> <p>"People living and working in our regions need access to fast and reliable telecommunications to go about almost every aspect of their lives. I encourage everyone who is interested, to have their say on the guidelines," Minister Coulton said.</p> <p>"The Regional Connectivity Program will make it easier for people in remote areas to communicate and help to address the tyranny of distance for businesses, so it's important we receive a range of feedback to get this program right."</p> <p>Consultation is open for three weeks until Friday, 13 March 2020 at 5:00pm (AEDT) and submissions can be made through the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications' website: <a href="http://www.communications.gov.au/regional-connectivity-guidelines">www.communications.gov.au/regional-connectivity-guidelines</a>.</p> <p>The Government is also launching an online noticeboard to help foster links between communities and telecommunications providers to help develop potential Regional Connectivity Program projects.</p> <p>Projects can now be registered on the noticeboard. State, Territory and Local Governments, regional development authorities, industry, business and community groups, not-for-profits and First Nations community controlled organisations are particularly invited to register their potential telecommunications project on the Noticeboard: <a href="http://www.communications.gov.au/regional-connectivity-program">www.communications.gov.au/regional-connectivity-program</a>.</p> <p><strong>END</strong></p> <h2>Background</h2> <p>The Regional Connectivity Program is part of the $220 million Stronger Regional Digital Connectivity Package, announced in the Government's response to the 2018 Regional Telecommunications Review.</p> <p>The rollout of the NBN and the Universal Service Guarantee provide a base level of telecommunications services across Australia.</p> <p>With the initial NBN rollout almost complete in regional Australia, there is a need for the network to be complemented in some areas with tailored solutions that address local priorities. The Regional Connectivity Program will complement the NBN, the Mobile Black Spot Program and the telecommunications industry's commercial investment plans.</p> <p> </p> <p><strong>Media contacts</strong>:<br /> <strong>Minister Fletcher</strong>:<br /> Brad Hatch | 0448 162 679 | <a href="mailto:Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au">Brad.Hatch@communications.gov.au</a><br /> Rebecca Papillo | 0439 892 771 | <a href="mailto:Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au">Rebecca.Papillo@communications.gov.au</a><br /> <strong>Minister Coulton</strong>:<br /> Steph Nicholls | 0417 314 920 | <a href="mailto:Steph.Nicholls@dfat.gov.au">Steph.Nicholls@dfat.gov.au</a></p> Fletcher Have your say on the Regional Connectivity Program guidelines Smart parking is now live in North Lakes https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/tudge/media-release/smart-parking-now-live-north-lakes <p>The North Lakes Smart Parking App was launched today, making parking at North Lakes more accessible for residents and commuters. </p> <p>Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the app enabled users to locate available parking spaces, based on live and accurate information. <br />  <br /> “This is a great initiative that will help manage the parking demand within Moreton Bay,” Mr Tudge said.<br />  <br /> Federal Member for Petrie Luke Howarth said sensors show parking availability data and then local commuters can see – in real time - where available parking spaces are.</p> <p>“Locals have already told me that the Smart Parking is going to make life easier and more efficient for them, especially families and older people who need to find a park close to the North Lakes Medical centre and for locals who work at the Westfield.” Mr Howarth said.<br />  <br /> Moreton Bay Councillor Julie Greer said the smart-parking technology would make it easier to find a park across North Lakes and in the CBD and noted there were 350 in-ground sensors installed in on-street parking bays.</p> <p>“Accommodating a population of more than 20,000, we know it’s important that we effectively manage parking within the CBD area. We are continuing to work to make Moreton Bay Region the easiest place to work, live and play in south-east Queensland,” Cr Greer said.<br />    <br /> Download the app for free through the <a href="https://apps.apple.com/au/app/mbrc-park/id1451887312">Apple App Store</a> or <a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mbrc.parking">Google Play</a>.</p> <p>The $900,000 Smart Parking App was a jointly funded venture, with the Australian Government through its Smart Cities and Suburbs Program and the Moreton Bay Regional Council both investing $450,000 in the project. </p> <h2>Media contacts:</h2> <p><strong>Mr Tudge's Office:</strong></p> <p>Michael Bennett | 0434 782 923</p> <p><strong>Mr Howarth's Office:</strong></p> <p>Electorate Office (07) 3284 8008</p> <p><strong>Cr Greer's Office: </strong></p> <p>Council office (07) 3480 6705</p> Tudge Smart parking is now live in North Lakes Speech to the International Institute of Communications: The Harmonised Framework—digital platforms and the media https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/speech/speech-international-institute-communications-harmonised-framework-digital-platforms-and-media <h2>Introduction</h2> <p>It is a pleasure to speak at this important forum considering a harmonised framework for digital platforms and the media.</p> <p>Of course this discussion topic is a reference to recommendation 6 in the ACCC's final report of the Digital Platforms Inquiry:</p> <p>Process to implement harmonised media regulatory framework: A new platform-neutral regulatory framework be developed and implemented to ensure effective and consistent regulatory oversight of all entities involved in content production or delivery in Australia, including media businesses, publishers, broadcasters and digital platforms. This would create a level playing field that promotes competition in Australian media and advertising markets.<a href="#_ftn1">[1]</a></p> <p>In December last year, I joined with the Prime Minister and the Treasurer to announce our government's response to the Digital Platforms Inquiry—which included accepting recommendation 6.</p> <p>In my remarks today I want to do three things:</p> <ul> <li>Look at what history teaches us about change in the media and communications sector </li> <li>Discuss the importance of competition—and of competitive neutrality</li> <li>Speak about the path forward to implement recommendation 6.</li> </ul> <h2>What history teaches us</h2> <p>I want to firstly take a brief look at the history of the media and communications sector—and to argue that we can see a clear pattern in which the arrival of a new technology disrupts the market and in turn drives changes to regulation. </p> <p>Mass communication and access to information arguably kicked off in the fifteenth century when Gutenberg invented the printing press.</p> <p>By the beginning of the seventeenth century, newspapers were being published in Germany and it didn't take long for similar publications to appear across Europe. Monarchs, fearful of criticism, tried to control the distribution of information by requiring licences for the use of printing presses.<a href="#_ftn2">[2]</a></p> <p>In 1662 the English Parliament passed the Licensing of the Press Act, which gave the government the power to regulate printing and printing presses and to prevent the "frequent Abuses in printing seditious treasonable and unlicensed Bookes (sic) and Pamphlets."<a href="#_ftn3">[3]</a> </p> <p>Since that time we have seen a succession of new communications technologies arrive—typically disrupting businesses which were dominant under the previous technology.</p> <p>Samuel Morse's 1830s invention, using electronic telegraphy, became the International Morse Code in 1851<a href="#_ftn4">[4]</a>, which led to the establishment of the telegraph sector, soon dominated by Western Union.<a href="#_ftn5">[5]</a></p> <p>Then the telephone came along in 1876—and while the telegraph business stayed healthy for many decades, it increasingly played second fiddle to the phone business.</p> <p>In Australia, the first telephone exchanges opened in Melbourne and Brisbane in 1880. The Postmaster-General's Department was established at Federation in 1901 and it and successor organisations ran the phone network as a government owned monopoly for almost a century. </p> <p>From the earliest days of colonisation Australia had a vigorous privately owned newspaper sector. But it faced significant disruption when radio came along, with public radio launching in 1923 and the ABC starting operations in 1932.</p> <p>An even bigger disruption came with the arrival of television. From the late 1920s, governments had considered whether such a service would be commercially viable—and you will not be surprised to hear that existing commercial media interests opposed its introduction.<a href="#_ftn6">[6]</a></p> <p>Following the 1953 Royal Commission into Television, which considered how the system could develop, how many stations should be licensed and what conditions and standards should be imposed on licensees, Parliament passed the Television Act in the same year.<a href="#_ftn7">[7]</a> The aim was to launch services in time for the Melbourne Olympics. </p> <p>The deadline was met—just—with TCN Nine launching its television service in September 1956 and the ABC launching in November that year with Channel ABN2. </p> <p>Throughout this period, television services operated under a regulatory framework set out in the Broadcasting Services Act 1942. It had been largely designed for radio in the 1940s, but adapted to allow television broadcasting to commence in 1956.</p> <p>Comprehensive regulatory change did not occur until the early nineties. In introducing the Broadcasting Services Bill to the House in 1992, the responsible Minister, Kim Beazley noted that the 1942 Act was a '…dog's breakfast.' He went onto say that:</p> <p>The dog which was without question a loose, rabid doberman pinscher, has been shot between the eyes and replaced by a sleek greyhound of legislation.</p> <p>Of course it was a greyhound for its times—when the sector was more narrowly defined than today. There were three metropolitan commercial television networks, a handful of regional broadcasters plus the ABC and SBS. Talkback radio, which had only been made legal in 1967, was dominant in the AM bands. FM radio was reshaping the delivery of music radio, following the introduction of Triple M, 2Day FM and Triple J in the 1980s.</p> <p>It was a time of influential "media moguls"—Kerry Packer, Christopher Skase and Alan Bond—and advertising "rivers of gold".</p> <p>The media sector today is significantly more diverse—with a variety of transmission technologies, devices and business models used to serve content to Australians who are consuming it very differently than they were even five years ago.</p> <p>In 2015, less than two per cent of Australians had SVOD services; around 57 per cent use these services today, and it is continuing to grow.<a href="#_ftn8">[8]</a></p> <p>New devices enable different viewing habits. According to the ABC's research, 94 per cent of video-on-demand viewing happens in the home. The rest is at work, school or university or commuting. 63 per cent is viewed on a big screen and 15 per cent via a hand-held device.</p> <p>The types of content being consumed on broadcast television has also changed. During the 1990s, film, drama and sport dominated the list of top rating programs each year.<a href="#_ftn9">[9]</a></p> <p>In recent years, reality television has emerged as the dominant genre. Last year, over 2.6 million Australians tuned into the finale of Married at First Sight, and this does not include people who watched it on catch up television<a href="#_ftn10">[10]</a> and The Masked Singer saw nearly 1.4 million curious Australians keen to unmask the Robot.<a href="#_ftn11">[11]</a></p> <p>Although we are still watching Australian programs on free-to-air television, SVOD services have given audiences the ability to watch content from anywhere in the world—and at a time of their choosing.</p> <p>Television broadcasters are up against Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus and YouTube Premium and now operate in a far more competitive environment. In 2018, commercial free-to-air had an advertising share of 21.8 percent—a massive drop from their share of just over 30 per cent in 1996.<a href="#_ftn12">[12]</a></p> <p>The SVOD sector in Australia—non-existent in 1996 or even 2006—generated revenue of over $1.1 billion domestically in 2018. PwC predicts this will grow to over $2 billion by 2023.<a href="#_ftn13">[13]</a></p> <p>The lesson from history, I would argue, is that major change in communications technology, and in turn communications markets, prompts changes to the regulatory framework within which those markets operate. </p> <p>History also shows us that we have traditionally regulated with the means of distribution front of mind. </p> <p>But today we need to ask the obvious question: can we continue to regulate distribution technologies in different ways when in substance they are delivering the same kinds of content to the same market?</p> <h2>Competition and competitive neutrality</h2> <p>This was a key question the ACCC asked about media regulation in its Digital Platforms Inquiry. In coming to its answer, the ACCC comprehensively laid out the way that new technologies, and new market participants—particularly the giant global digital platforms such as Google and Facebook—have disrupted the market. Its recommendations for change build upon its analysis of how the market has transformed. </p> <p>At the outset it is important to recognise the primacy of competition as a policy objective. Competition is a powerful engine for lower prices, better service, more innovation and better outcomes for consumers. So the Government wanted to know if the growth of the digital platforms is boosting or damaging competition. </p> <p>That is why the then Treasurer, Scott Morrison, charged the ACCC with conducting the Digital Platforms Inquiry: to examine the effect the digital platforms are having on competition in the media and advertising services markets.</p> <p>What the ACCC found is that the digital platforms have changed how people and businesses connect. In a given month, around 19.2 million people in Australia use Google Search, 17.3 million use Facebook, 17.6 million use YouTube (owned by Google), and 11.2 million use Instagram (owned by Facebook).<a href="#_ftn14">[14]</a></p> <p>Many Australians access these services daily for long periods of time, spending an average of 23 minutes a day on Google (excluding YouTube) and just over half an hour a day on Facebook.<a href="#_ftn15">[15]</a></p> <p>Next, the ACCC made a very clear finding that our existing regulatory frameworks are profoundly challenged by the business models of digital platforms, their global nature and the pace at which digital technologies and services evolve and iterate.</p> <p>Digital platforms have fundamentally changed the way media content is produced, distributed and consumed, and Facebook and Google have grown rapidly to become the dominant players in important online markets in Australia. This dominance is underpinned by the volume of data these companies gather and control.</p> <p>The Morrison Government has accepted the ACCC's overriding conclusion that there is a need for reform—to better protect consumers, improve transparency, recognise power imbalances and ensure that substantial market power is not used to lessen competition in media and advertising services markets.</p> <p>The Final Report contained 23 recommendations ranging across competition, consumer protection, privacy and media regulatory reform. </p> <p>The ACCC's recommendations concerning media regulation drew on its detailed factual analysis. It carefully documented the very substantial differences between the regulatory requirements on traditional media businesses, such as free-to-air television, and the very much lighter requirements on businesses which compete with them, such as internet-based subscription video on demand (SVOD) services.</p> <p>For example, different rules apply to content depending on whether it is distributed on free-to-air television, subscription television or on subscription video on demand services.</p> <p>The ACCC found that despite the increasingly significant role played by digital platforms in distributing content to Australian consumers virtually no regulation applies to these services.</p> <p>The bulk of Australian content obligations only apply to commercial free-to-air television broadcasters—despite newer SVOD services being accessed by more than 55 per cent of Australians.<a href="#_ftn16"></a></p> <p>The content rules are but one area, of the several highlighted by the ACCC, where there is a sharp disparity between the extent and cost of regulatory burdens faced by traditional media businesses and those faced by internet-based competitors.</p> <p>Other imbalances across platforms highlighted by the ACCC include advertising standards and publishing regulations and standards.</p> <p>The ACCC called for a harmonised regulatory framework, which applies equally to businesses serving the same market, regardless of the technology they use. It said the benefits of this approach would include:</p> <ul> <li>creating a more level playing field between market participants and increasing competition on the merits</li> <li>removing redundant legislation to reduce the overall regulatory burden on industry</li> <li>simplifying the complex system of regulations currently in place </li> <li>enabling the determination of issues most important to Australian audiences—and ensuring that such issues are more consistently and reliably protected, so as to do a better job of safeguarding community expectations and standards </li> <li>Establishing more flexible, technology-neutral principles that could better respond to technological change and innovation </li> <li>improving the global competitiveness of Australian digital content industries.</li> </ul> <h2>The Path Forward</h2> <p>Let me now turn to the path forward. </p> <p>In deciding how we would respond to the ACCC's recommendation, the Government took note of the ACCC's comment that this is a large and complex reform and is best dealt with in stages.</p> <p>We certainly agree with that view!</p> <p>What we have committed to, then, is that the Government will commence a staged process to reform media regulation towards an end state of a platform-neutral regulatory framework covering both online and offline delivery of media content to Australian consumers. </p> <p>We will work through the detail carefully, dividing the work into a number of stages, as the ACCC recommends, and consulting with affected stakeholders at each stage.</p> <p>Commencing in 2020 our immediate focus is on three key issues:</p> <ul> <li>developing a uniform classification framework across all media platforms;</li> <li>the extent of Australian content obligations on free-to-air television broadcasters (including drama and children's content), and whether there should be Australian content obligations on subscription video-on-demand services; and</li> <li>other aspects of the policy framework to support Australian film and television content.</li> </ul> <p>As regards the first of these issues, classification, in December last year I announced a review of the National Classification Scheme that was established in 1995. </p> <p>The National Classification Code and the Guidelines for the Classifications of Films have not been reviewed since 2002—and the Guidelines for the Classification of Games were last examined in 2013. </p> <p>This process is being led by Neville Stevens AO, a former secretary of the then Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts and the then Department of Industry, Technology and Regional Development.</p> <p>I expect that the Stevens review will:</p> <ul> <li>help redesign a classification framework better suited to a modern content environment and identify any updates needed to the classification code and guidelines; and</li> <li>consider different approaches to classification to reflect the growing diversity of services available to consumers in the marketplace.</li> </ul> <p>Without wanting to pre-empt the outcome of the Stevens review, I think there is room for industry to play a greater role in the classification process, while maintaining the integrity of the Australian classification scheme. This will likely mean a more streamlined classification process that is adaptive to the digital content market, outlines the obligations of industry across platforms but very importantly continues to perform the key role of providing valuable classification information to Australian consumers.</p> <p>Mr Stevens is considering public submissions and engaging with stakeholders, and I anticipate receiving his report in April.</p> <p>Let me turn then to the second and third of these issues—Australian content obligations and the policy framework supporting Australian film and television content. In December, we indicated that the next step would be for the Government to release an options paper co-authored by Screen Australia and the Australian Communications and Media Authority that will look at how to best support Australian stories on our screens in a modern, multi-platform environment.</p> <p>Screen Australia and the ACMA are hard at work on this paper. We said we wanted to release it in the early part of 2020 and we are working to that timetable. My expectation is that this paper will set out a comprehensive fact base on the issues, including:</p> <ul> <li>the policy rationales for supporting Australian content—both economic and cultural</li> <li>The extent of support the Australian government provides to the sector directly</li> <li>The extent of regulatory obligations on the television sector </li> <li>The growth of streaming services globally and in Australia—and the impact this is having on the Australian television sector and the content production sector, including both threats to existing business models and opportunities to meet global demand for content from the streaming sector.</li> </ul> <p>As you would expect from the nomenclature, the paper will also sketch out some high level possible policy options in response. Of course this will be as a prompt for public discussion and industry consultation—not as an indication of any decisions having been taken. I look forward to getting into that consultation once the paper is ready to release. </p> <p>These three issues, then, form the first phase of our response to the ACCC's recommendation to harmonise the media regulatory framework.</p> <p>By the end of 2020 I anticipate we will make announcements about the details and process for a second phase of reform. This is expected to include a review of the advertising rules and restrictions across all delivery platforms, consideration of mechanisms to monitor and enforce the regulatory framework across all platforms, and other measures to remove redundant legislation and implement a coherent legal framework for consumers and for industry participants. </p> <h2>Conclusion</h2> <p>Let me conclude, then, by returning to the argument with which I began: the history of the media and communications sector shows a series of market disruptions driven by technology, which in turn have prompted a reset of regulation.</p> <p>The ACCC's Digital Platforms Inquiry comprehensively lays out the scale of regulatory disparity and market disruption which is presently occurring in the Australian media and communications sector.</p> <p>In response, our government has a clear agenda for regulatory reform, as we work to harmonise the regulation of the media sector. </p> <p>Our aim is for a more coherent, consistent and competitively neutral framework—that has benefits for consumers, the sector and the nation.</p> <p>_______________________________________________________________</p> <p><a></a>[1] ACCC (2019) Digital Platforms Inquiry—Final Report, p 31</p> <p><a></a>[2] <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/1998/02/11/a-history-of-newspaper-gutenbergs-press-started-a-revolution/2e95875c-313e-4b5c-9807-8bcb031257ad/">https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/1998/02/11/a-history-of-newspaper-gutenbergs-press-started-a-revolution/2e95875c-313e-4b5c-9807-8bcb031257ad/</a></p> <p><a></a>[3] <a href="https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/17219056/677787.pdf?sequence=1">https://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/17219056/677787.pdf?sequence=1</a></p> <p><a></a>[4] <a href="https://www.britannica.com/topic/Morse-Code">https://www.britannica.com/topic/Morse-Code</a></p> <p><a></a>[5] <a href="https://www.britannica.com/technology/telegraph/Development-of-the-telegraph-industry">https://www.britannica.com/technology/telegraph/Development-of-the-telegraph-industry</a></p> <p><a></a>[6] <a href="https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/Media_ownership/1950-1956">https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/Media_ownership/1950-1956</a></p> <p><a></a>[7] <a href="https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/Media_ownership/1950-1956">https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/Media_ownership/1950-1956</a></p> <p><a></a>[8] Roy Morgan (2 Sept 2019) <a href="https://www.roymorgan.com/findings/8113-state-of-the-nation-sotn-media-svod-overtakes-home-phones-august-2019-201909020417">The new minority—the home phone connected</a></p> <p><a></a>[9] Analysis by the Bureau of Communications and Arts Research of OzTAM data (2019)</p> <p><a></a>[10] OzTAM ratings</p> <p><a></a>[11] <a href="https://www.adnews.com.au/news/the-masked-singer-reaches-1-37m-in-grand-final">https://www.adnews.com.au/news/the-masked-singer-reaches-1-37m-in-grand-final</a></p> <p><a></a>[12] ACCC (2019) Digital Platforms Inquiry—Final Report, p 18</p> <p><a></a>[13] PwC (2019) Global Media and Entertainment Outlook</p> <p><a></a>[14] ACCC (2019) Digital Platforms Inquiry—Final Report, p 6</p> <p><a></a>[15] ACCC (2019) Digital Platforms Inquiry—Final Report, p 44 </p> <p><a></a>[16] Roy Morgan (2 Sept 2019) <a href="https://www.roymorgan.com/findings/8113-state-of-the-nation-sotn-media-svod-overtakes-home-phones-august-2019-201909020417">The new minority—the home phone connected</a></p> Fletcher Speech to the International Institute of Communications: The Harmonised Framework—digital platforms and the media Locals to take first look at new Queensland Country Bank Stadium https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/tudge/media-release/locals-take-first-look-new-queensland-country-bank-stadium <p>The great unveiling of the Queensland Country Bank Stadium will take place tomorrow, with the gates unlocked for Open Day – the first opportunity for locals to take a look inside the brand-new home of the beloved North Queensland Cowboys.</p> <p>The Open Day represents a once-only chance to enjoy a sneak peek of the stadium before its first major events, going behind the scenes to access the team change rooms, inspect the commentary and coaches boxes, and check out the view from one of 25,000 seats.</p> <p>Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said it was a proud and exciting day for the people of Townsville.</p> <p>“This stadium will be a legacy for Townsville and will continue to provide a social and economic boost for the region,” Mr Tudge said.</p> <p>“Completing this stadium through Australia’s first City Deal shows what can be achieved when all levels of government and the community worked together towards a shared vision.”</p> <p>Queensland Premier and Minister for Trade Annastacia Palaszczuk said her government had invested $190 million into the stadium which had been a welcome boost for local workers.</p> <p>”This will lead to a renewed sense of confidence and pride amongst North Queensland residents,” the Premier said</p> <p>“Make no mistake, construction of the stadium has been a massive shot of confidence for the local economy.</p> <p>“Almost 500 local businesses have been involved and over 2,000 people worked on the site, including a huge number of Townsville locals and Indigenous Australians.”</p> <p>Queensland Minister for Housing and Public Works and Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni said the Open Day was the perfect opportunity to celebrate the stadium. </p> <p>“Open Day is a chance to celebrate the achievements of everyone involved in building this iconic venue and to say thank you to the wider community, which has been hugely supportive of the project,” Mr de Brenni said.</p> <p>“And now it’s complete, the stadium will – quite literally – be a game-changer for the North Queensland Cowboys and their passionate supporters.”</p> <p>Federal Member for Herbert Phillip Thompson said the project would continue to bring a range of benefits to the city.</p> <p> “We can see here today that three levels of Government have worked together to deliver something which will ensure a strong economic future for the city,” Mr Thompson said.</p> <p> “The new stadium showcases the growth of Townsville – it will become a centrepiece for the CBD and provide a great place for the Townsville community to enjoy for generations to come.”</p> <p>Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said Queensland’s newest stadium was a once in a generation project that would revitalise the CBD.</p> <p>“Tomorrow, North Queensland Families will be coming through the gates in their thousands.</p> <p>“It’ll be a great day out, with lots of free events and behind the scenes looks at the new North Queensland Cowboys home.”</p> <p>Townsville Mayor Jenny Hill recognised the achievements of all involved and the significance of the stadium in revitalising the city.</p> <p>“The stadium is a symbol of progress and achievement for Townsville, and should be a source of pride for all of us,” Ms Hill said.</p> <p>“Bringing rugby league and other major events into the CBD will revitalise the heart of our city and deliver a range of social and economic benefits.</p> <p>“Council has been working full-tilt to take advantage of this once-in-a-generation opportunity through supporting projects such as the new City Bus Hub, Flinders Lane development, and waterfront promenade upgrade.</p> <p>“Adults and kids alike should come along to Open Day and meet with your Cowboys heroes, have your face painted, and scope out the best seats for the first game day on 13 March.”</p> <p>The Open Day will run from 9am to 1pm. Access is free, but a printed ticket will be required for entry. Further information about the stadium and the Open Day, including ticketing information, can be found at <a href="http://www.queenslandcountrybankstadium.com.au/">queenslandcountrybankstadium.com.au</a>.</p> <p>With Cowboys players in attendance, face painting and other kids’ activities, and demonstrations by Queensland Emergency Services, the Open Day will be a celebration of this iconic, state-of-the-art venue, which is sure to be enjoyed by Townsville locals for decades to come.</p> <p>The $293 million stadium is the headline commitment of the Townsville City Deal and was jointly funded by the Australian and Queensland governments, with more than one million construction hours providing thousands of local job opportunities.</p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr Tudge </strong>– Michael Bennett 0434 782 923<br /> <strong>Ms Palaszczuk</strong> –  Chris Taylor 0400 990 162<br /> <strong>Mr de Brenni </strong>– Rosie Gilbert 0466 834 330<br /> <strong>Mr Thompson </strong>–  Electorate Office (07) 4725 2066<br /> <strong>Cr Hill </strong>– Scott Chandler 0468 595 276</p> Tudge Locals to take first look at new Queensland Country Bank Stadium More money for cash-strapped drought communities https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/littleproud/media-release/more-money-cash-strapped-drought-communities <p>The Australian Government has extended the Drought Community Support Initiative (DSCI), providing a further $82.75 million to continue crucial support for farming households battling the continuing drought.</p> <p>On top of this, further drought relief support will also be available under a new Drought Community Outreach program.</p> <p>Minister for Drought David Littleproud said the DCSI extension meant up to $3,000 in cash payments for more farmers, farm workers and farm contractors and suppliers who are experiencing financial hardship and struggling to pay for basic household expenses.</p> <p>“This step-up in support follows the Government’s announcement last month that an additional 52 Local Government Areas (LGAs) are eligible to apply for the Drought Communities Programme (DCP) Extension, supporting communities in the most drought-affected agricultural regions of Australia by investing in economy-stimulating local infrastructure initiatives," Minister Littleproud said.</p> <p>Eligible farming households in these 52 new LGAs will now be able to access the DCSI from mid to late March, from either The Salvation Army or the St Vincent de Paul Society.</p> <p>“The Government is doing what it takes to support farming households through these extremely difficult financial and stressful times,” Minister Littleproud said.</p> <p>"Under the new Drought Community Outreach program, the Country Women’s Association (CWA) and Rotary Australia World Community Service would each receive a further $5 million to provide vouchers of up to $500 to farming households experiencing hardship due to drought.</p> <p>“Led by the Coordinator-General for Drought, the Hon Shane Stone AC QC, the National Drought and North Queensland Flood Response and Recovery Agency is bringing a renewed focus to working in partnership with all levels of government, farmers, regional communities and small businesses, industry and not-for-profit organisations to respond to the current drought, as well as prepare for future droughts.</p> <p>“CWA and Rotary will also partner with the National Drought and North Queensland Flood Response and Recovery Agency to support community outreach activities.</p> <p>“Given the local knowledge and expertise in regional Australia possessed by members of the CWA and Rotary, it made good sense for the Agency to partner with them in its community outreach activities throughout 2020.”</p> <p>Today’s announcement takes the Government’s commitment of providing the DCSI to drought-affected farming households to over $180 million since 2018.</p> <p>The Government will also support people and families and coming off the four-year Farm Household Allowance. Those who are finishing up their time on FHA will receive a one off relief payment which is equivalent to a further six months on FHA.</p> <p>Supporting drought-affected communities remains the Government’s most urgent priority and we will continue to monitor the situation. If more farmers continue to face tough times, there is legislation in place to extend the relief payment.</p> <h2><strong>Media contact </strong></h2> <p>Douglas Ferguson, 0455 448 985</p> Littleproud More money for cash-strapped drought communities Major milestone for Launceston City Deal as construction starts on new era for UTAS https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/tudge/media-release/major-milestone-launceston-city-deal-construction-starts-new-era-utas <p>An economic boost is on its way to Launceston’s CBD as construction begins on the University of Tasmania’s new Library and Student Services building.</p> <p>Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwein said today’s sod turn event was an historic event marking the largest single infrastructure project ever delivered in Launceston.</p> <p>“This investment in the University of Tasmania’s presence will allow Launceston to specialise and become a nationally distinctive campus for higher education studies in food, agriculture, health, associated technologies, timber design and innovation” Mr Gutwein said</p> <p>Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the campus relocation was the centrepiece of the Morrison Government’s $254 million investment in the Launceston City Deal.</p> <p>“This will help the University of Tasmania connect with the economy and lifestyle of the CBD, injecting life and a financial boost across the city,” Mr Tudge said.</p> <p>Federal Minister for Education Dan Tehan said the Australian Government’s $130 million investment in the university was part of Launceston’s largest-ever infrastructure project.</p> <p>“The new Inveresk district is expected to attract 10,000 students by 2032, providing access to modern, world-class teaching and research facilities, and delivering new degrees and courses that better meet the needs of students and industry,” Mr Tehan said.</p> <p>Tasmanian Minister for State Growth Michael Ferguson said the State was pleased to be able to contribute $60 million towards the relocation project as part of its $119 million overall investment in the Launceston City Deal.</p> <p>“Revitalising our city, boosting our economy and creating a more vibrant environment for students will also help generate many job opportunities from construction work, including apprenticeships, to academic and university support roles,” Mr Ferguson said.</p> <p>Federal Member for Bass Bridget Archer said early works started in late January to prepare the foundations for the new library and student services building.</p> <p>“Following the completion of works in 2021, we look forward to the whole relocation being complete by 2024,” Mrs Archer said.</p> <p>Mayor of Launceston Albert van Zetten said that while the building industry would be at near capacity during the various construction phases, the overall benefits to the economy from that alone could not be understated.</p> <p>"Then there's the flow-on effects to our businesses that will receive a significant boost from this development - both during the construction phase and once complete as thousands of students are delivered onto the doorstop of our CBD, bringing with them much greater vibrancy to the city," Mayor van Zetten said.</p> <h2><strong>Media Contact:</strong></h2> <p><strong>Mr Tudge </strong>– Michael Bennett 0434 782 923</p> <p><strong>Mr Tehan</strong> – Ministerial Office (02 6277 7350)</p> <p><strong>Mr Ferguson</strong> – Ben Hansen 0439 553 390</p> <p><strong>Mrs Archer </strong>– Electorate Office (03) 6334 7033</p> <p><strong>Cr van Zetten</strong> – Mayor’s Office (03) 6323 3101 | 0413 671 926</p> Tudge Major milestone for Launceston City Deal as construction starts on new era for UTAS Transcript - Press Conference Launceston, Tasmania https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/tudge/interview/transcript-press-conference-launceston-tasmania <p>Subjects: UTAS Launceston Campus; Launceston City Deal</p> <p><strong>BRIDGET ARCHER:</strong><br /> I am absolutely delighted to be here today with this official sod turning of the UTAS Transformation Project. It's been some time in coming and it's a very exciting day for Launceston. I've got Minister Alan Tudge here with me, City of Launceston Mayor Albert Van Zetten, Infrastructure Minister Michael Ferguson and, of course, Rufus Black, who is going to tell us how we've got to this point. Rufus?</p> <p><strong>RUFUS BLACK:</strong><br /> Thank you, Bridget. This really is an exciting day for Launceston and it's an exciting day for the north of Tasmania and it's a really exciting day for the whole State. This is the cornerstone project that gets our whole transformation to move the university here to Inveresk underway. The building that we are building here that is going to get underway is our student library and student experience building. A truly beautiful response to this remarkable kind of context here, talking to the old buildings that are all around us and yet are fully equipped to provide the most contemporary kind of learning spaces that students could want.</p> <p>A building not just for students but a building also for the community that provides a really important facility that will be the cornerstone of this campus. So, it's a real thrill to see this happen. But these kind of projects don't happen without the extraordinary group of people coming together and so it's a real delight for us today to have so many of the people who have been supporting and making this happen.</p> <p>This is a project of every level of government. We've had incredible support from the Commonwealth, wonderful support from the State and an absolute power of work by the local council and local councilors who have made such a difference to actually working this through, to create a building that is a real response, not just to the needs of the university but also to the community's hopes and aspirations for it.</p> <p>We would not be here today without all of those levels of government collaborating around a sense of what education can do for Tasmania, for Launceston, indeed for the State. That shared vision of how it can be transforming our society, our economy, helping to revitalise it, to add energy and growth, create next generation of jobs here and, of course, to support greater social inclusion. All of that happens when the levels of government come together around an exciting vision of what education can do for a community.</p> <p>So today the university is here with gratitude and thanks for all of that help, all of that support, all of that collaboration. Ours is a day of appreciation for what’s got us here and we look forward to pursuing that vision in collaboration with the community in just the same ways that got us here today. So, it's my pleasure to introduce to you the Honourable Alan Tudge to say some words for the Commonwealth. Thank you.</p> <p><strong>ALAN TUDGE:</strong><br /> Thank you so much, Rufus. It’s great to be here with my colleagues Bridget and Wendy along with Michael and Albert, the Mayor, for this very exciting day. I thank you for putting on such beautiful weather for us here today as well. This is a tremendous day for Launceston and for Tasmania.</p> <p>From what I'm advised, this is the single largest infrastructure project in Launceston's history which we are kicking off today. $260 million worth. Half of that is from the Commonwealth Government, the rest from the other partners of whom is represented here today, including the University of Tasmania. This is all about jobs. It's about boosting the economy and it's about providing more opportunities for young people here in Tasmania.</p> <p>It's particularly about jobs. In the short-term, this is going to create 430 jobs during the construction phase. 20 per cent of those jobs are going to be apprentices and trainees. In the longer term there is going to be 230 ongoing jobs at the university site, which comes about from this project. So it's jobs now and its jobs for the future and it's creating opportunities for young people. That's what this partnership is about between the three levels of government and the University of Tasmania.</p> <p>It's so exciting because in 2032 when it's all completed, up and running and it's at full development, we'll have an extra 10,000 students studying here at the University of Tasmania, here in Launceston, interacting in with industry, to cutting edge research, international students coming here and providing opportunities for young people across Tasmania as well.</p> <p>I really just want to thank the University of Tasmania led by Rufus Black who is such a dynamic Vice Chancellor for the work, which he has done to get us to this particular point in time. I also want to thank the partnership that we have with the Tasmanian government along with the local council in pulling this together. It really is a great partnership this effort, and of course, it's the centerpiece of the overall Launceston City Deal, which is aiming at transforming and boosting Launceston over the years ahead.</p> <p>So it's really great to be here to kick this off, turn the first sod and in 2024 it will be exciting to be back here and to officially open this for new students, for the greater opportunities which this presents for Launceston.</p> <p><strong>MICHAEL FERGUSON:</strong><br /> Thank you, Alan. It's a fantastic day. It's a beautiful day because of the weather but it was also a beautiful day yesterday when it was pouring with rain and I know our farmers really appreciated the soaking. But it's a special day because today we celebrate the fact that the talk is over, the budget preparations are done, the planning has been completed and we are actually now down to work.</p> <p>As Alan has said, it's exciting to see the partnership delivering hundreds of new jobs. It does include 80 new apprenticeships here on site and as we today kick off the library and student experience building and together within the next few weeks the commencement of the new bridge across the North Esk River, this is about connecting this campus really to the heart of Launceston. And it's about sending a very clear message to Tasmanians, young and older Tasmanians that education is for you.</p> <p>It is our future, whether it's an academic or a vocational pathway, we value all of our jobs and the contribution that everybody can make to our economy. Vitally as well, it's a partnership that has seen massive investment in our city. We are seeing the partnership model develop to such a point that it is the centerpiece of the City Deal that has been struck between the three levels of government and the university, of course, has been central to that.</p> <p>I do want to say a big thank you to my parliamentary colleagues, particularly Bridget Archer and Senator Wendy Askew and, of course, the Premier who have been so instrumental from the Tasmanian Government's point of view in bringing the parties together. But we could not have done this without the Commonwealth. And so Bridget Archer and Alan Tudge, it's been fantastic to work with you and the energy that we've been each able to bring this, including through the Office of Coordinator General has been absolutely phenomenal.</p> <p>So as I conclude, I will make the point that there has been a lot of discussion. There has been a lot of community consultation. There has been a lot of interest. There has been supporters and there have been the detractors. But now we deliver this project and we can all look forward to the completion of this fantastic redevelopment of Inveresk and indeed the transformation of the university here and see a vital student learning and research, the excitement that can come from more generations of Tasmanians seeing their future life potential being achieved through better education pathways. And from that point of view the Tasmanian Government is a proud contributor of the $60 million towards this project and we want to wish it all the very best into the future. Thank you.</p> <p><strong>MAYOR ALBERT VAN ZETTEN:</strong><br /> I agree with everything that has been said and a little bit more. No, It’s absolutely fantastic and as a city we have been extremely pleased to work through a process and it has been a process. I want to thank my councilors that are here, Councillor McKenzie and Finlay in particular, who have been part of that working group. Working very hard along with many at the university to make sure we can iron out those differences that we've had over the journey, and there have been some differences and different ways of doing things, but it's been fantastic the last few years the way we've been able to work extremely well together and make sure that we deliver, as has been said, not just the building and the jobs for the next number of years when the building is happening but also for me it's the long-term impact on our community. The long¬term impact of helping people through education, realising that there are so many people in northern Tasmania, and it's not just about Launceston, but northern Tasmania that do not go on to further education.</p> <p>That is something that is an issue that affects a lot of things in our community, including health. So this is so important for the city. It's really great that we've finally got to this stage. I will be more excited even still once, we see the opening because I think that is always the better stage, to see the opening and see it happen.</p> <p>I want to thank obviously the City Deal that we've had with the Federal Government. The City Deal is continuing to deliver for our city. This is one of the projects, obviously a major one, but the City Deal has other projects to do with the Tamar Estuary, our City Heart projects to do with our northern suburbs revitalisation. We want to continue to work together to ensure that we get that investment of the dollars into this city to make this community an even better community than what it is today. We are a great city, a beautiful city and a normal day in this city, as each of you know, this is a normal beautiful day in our great city and it's something that we want to continue to develop for Launceston to be one of the great regional cities of the world.<br />  <br /> That's something that we continue to work on and continue to work with and this project will help us to do that along with all the other projects. So to everybody involved, thank you very much and it's been exciting to work with the Liberal Government, State and Federal to get this City Deal and we stress how important that's been to our city and how important it's going to be for the next five to six years as well. Thank you.<br />  </p> Tudge Transcript - Press Conference Launceston, Tasmania New toolkit boosts online safety resources for schools https://minister.infrastructure.gov.au/fletcher/media-release/new-toolkit-boosts-online-safety-resources-schools <p>A new toolkit launched today by the Government's eSafety Commissioner will provide schools across Australia with resources to help prevent and respond to online safety issues, creating safer online environments for children across the country.</p> <p>The eSafety Toolkit for Schools has four key themes—Prepare, Engage, Educate and Respond—and includes more than 25 individual resources with tips for teachers and school administrators on how to respond to online safety incidents, and promote safer online practices across school communities.</p> <p>Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the Morrison Government welcomes the launch of these practical tools to support schools as they navigate classrooms and schoolyards with an increasing digital presence.</p> <p>'We know students are accessing the internet through multiple devices—both at home and at school—which provides valuable educational and social benefits, but can also result in issues such as cyberbullying, inappropriate sharing of images or even grooming by online predators. These situations require proactive and informed management by teachers, school administrators, and parents and carers,' Minister Fletcher said.</p> <p>'The Toolkit compiles independent expert advice providing a range of guidance and practical tips. Like most aspects of raising children, there's no one-size-fits-all approach. I'm confident there are important insights for all school communities to take away to help keep students safe online.</p> <p>'The Government is committed to providing practical online safety solutions to schools and families that complement our work to continue enhancing our world-leading online safety policy and legislative frameworks.'</p> <p>The initiative responds to recommendations from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and the Bullying and Cyberbullying Senior Education Officials Working Group.</p> <p>To access the free toolkit visit: <a href="https://www.esafety.gov.au/toolkit-schools">www.esafety.gov.au/toolkit-schools</a>.</p> <p>ENDS</p> Fletcher New toolkit boosts online safety resources for schools