QRC supports funding for communities affected by mining

 The Queensland Resources Council has endorsed a proposal for $750 million in funding for communities affected by the mining boom.

The Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) is reportedly seeking in its pre-election policy document a five year $150 million per annum funding program for councils that can show the mining industry has impacted their community.

QRC chief executive Michael Roche stated that it reflects the industry body’s own position in its pre-epection policy document.

"The expected growth of the resources sector over the next 10 years is just phenomenal with $142 billion worth of projects currently on the books, and this is going to require about 40,000 additional people in direct resource industry roles, and many more in support industries," he said.

"Resource communities are already feeling the strain as infrastructure struggles to keep up with demand, so it’s obvious that these communities are going to need some help to adapt to the further expansion ahead for them.

"The QRC is therefore also seeking commitments from the major parties for additional funding for community infrastructure in host resource communities."

According to a recent QRC Deloitte Access Economics Growth Outlook Study, if all of the $142 billion worth of resources projects go ahead, then Queensland’s mining royalties may exceed $7 billion annually by 2020.

"The QRC joins with the LGAQ in calling for a closer alignment between the responsibility for accommodating resource growth and the revenues that accrue from this growth," Roche said.

"However, while the resource sector is willing to play its part, whoever forms the next Queensland government should be looking to meet the additional demand for the infrastructure and services that are normally within the realm of governments."

One of the major problems facing many mining communities is the rising rents in towns making it difficult for non-miners to live in the region, which has forced the government to create a Rent Affordability Taskforce for Queensland mining towns.

 

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