Member for Groom Dr John McVeigh has welcomed a range of initiatives in the Federal Government’s Budget last night.
“The Federal Government is investing in regional Australia by delivering infrastructure that will drive economic growth and secure more and better paying jobs for communities on the Darling Downs ” Dr McVeigh said.
“There are hard infrastructure projects such as the inland rail which is receiving a $8.4 billion boost but then there are a range of programs that will enable our region to grow and prepare for the future ” he said.
“Under the Regional Growth Fund $200 million in additional funding will increase the Government’s commitment to the Building Better Regions Fund to almost $500 million. I have already been in discussion with a number of Groom businesses looking to access this funding for some exciting projects currently on the drawing board.
“There is also a $272 million fund to be established to drive major transformational projects of more than $10 million to unlock opportunity and potential in the regions. Toowoomba is expanding rapidly and our growth is in our hands … the Darling Downs has always embraced change and opportunity.”
Dr McVeigh also welcomed the announcement a third round of the Stronger Communities Program which helps fund small capital projects in local communities.
“I will be encouraging local groups to come forward with proposals under this scheme. There are grants between $5000 and $20 000 available for projects and the next round is opening soon. I look forward to meeting with community groups to see what can be achieved ” he said.
“Regional Australia is a key driver of the Australian economy responsible for 67% of our exports and 45% of the domestic tourism market. Most of the food production and all the production of gas and electricity that powers our households occurs in regional Australia and the Darling Downs has the potential to grow in all these pursuits with the right investment.
“The National Broadband Network is within sight of completion in Groom and that will aid in the transformation to a new economy. We need to continue to pursue the next round of investment and ideas for our region and foster opportunity through continuing tax reform which helps small business.”