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    Minister for Local Government, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
    The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe

    $120 million to fund water projects in Queensland indigenous communities

    Minister for Local Government, Minister for Racing and Minister for Multicultural Affairs
    The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe

    Thursday, March 08, 2018

    $120 million to fund water projects in Queensland indigenous communities

    The first funding from a $120 million Palaszczuk Government program to improve the health and safety of indigenous communities is flowing to nine councils to improve vital water, wastewater and solid waste facilities.

    Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said almost $20 million from the Indigenous Councils Critical Infrastructure Program has been approved to kick-start the first projects.

    “This program is ensuring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in discrete communities have infrastructure to suit their specific needs and the training to support the infrastructure over the long-term,” Mr Hinchliffe said.
     
    “The end result is safer, healthier drinking water and environment with every community receiving vital infrastructure to provide for a sustainable future.”

    The vital projects include a $3.75 million upgrade of a wastewater treatment plant on Saibai Island and an almost $2 million upgrade of the wastewater treatment plant on Mer Island for the Torres Strait Island Regional Council, while other Torres Strait communities will receive upgrades to improve water quality.

    The Cherbourg Aboriginal Shire Council will receive a $2.76 million upgrade to its water treatment plant, wastewater and solid waste facilities and the Aurukun Shire Council will receive a $1.8 million upgrade to its solid waste facility.

    Member for Cook Cynthia Lui said: “This funding is fantastic news for Queensland Indigenous communities, including Cape communities in the Far North.

    “It will deliver these communities infrastructure to suit their specific needs and the training to support the infrastructure over the long-term. The Palaszczuk Government continues to deliver for the Cape, and this is another great example of our commitment to the region.”

    Aurukun Shire Council Mayor Dereck Walpo said the project is tailored to meet the needs of the community.

    “Our solid waste facility is in need of refurbishment and this funding program will make a real difference to the community's health and wellbeing,” Cr Walpo said.

    Cherbourg Aboriginal Shire Council Mayor Arnold Murray said the upgraded infrastructure will keep up with the community's demand for water.

    “These projects will directly benefit the community's health and wellbeing. They will build on other projects in Cherbourg to improve the surrounding environment and help make the town a better place to live,” Cr Murray said.

    In the 2017-18 State Budget, the Queensland Government announced funding of $120 million over four years for the ICCIP, which delivers repairs and upgrades to critical water, wastewater and solid waste infrastructure for 16 Indigenous councils. To learn more, visit: https://www.dilgp.qld.gov.au/iccip

    Media contact: Martin Philip 0427 919 548