Feasibility study still waiting to be signed
Urannah Dam faces delays
IT’S been almost a year since the State Government announced it would spend $3 million on a feasibility study into the Urannah Dam, but so far nothing has been delivered.
Initiative Capital, Bowen Collinsville Enterprises (BCE) and Urannah Properties Association were to use the money to plan for the dam, 90km west of Mackay.
But on Friday, BCE chairman Paul McLaughlin released a statement, with the backing of the Queensland LNP concerned it was close to a year on and there was no agreement to even start the study.
Paul McLaughlin said BEC had been trying to get the initial stages of the project off the ground for the past year.
“It seems like every time we take a step forward, we end up two steps back,” Mr McLaughlin said. “I thought it would be straight forward from here as it is federal money, and we have an agreement in place and full federal support.”
Despite the obvious delays, Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt, who’s acting as Energy, Biofuels and Water Supply Minister, said the State Government was still committed to the feasibility study.
Mr Pitt said “the LNP is only making mischief and misleading the people of Bowen”. “The Department of Energy and Water Supply has been attempting to broker an agreement between the parties, however, that has not yet been finalised.”
In October 2016, the then Queensland Water Supply Minister Mark Bailey was in Mackay to announce the $3 million spend as part of $15 million spend to kickstart 15 water projects around Queensland.
Mr Bailey said at the time that the money was being provided because, the 100% Federal Government National Water Infrastructure Development Fund, was only reimbursed when it was spent.
Member for Whitsunday Jason Costigan has questioned the need for a feasibility study at all saying it’s been done and “people are jack of the studies”.
“People from Snowy Hydro, you reckon they’re dumba**es? They did work on the viability of the Urannah Dam concept decades ago,” he said.
❝ If I had my way I’d actually send the bulldozers in tomorrow. — MP Jason Costigan