ALP pulls funds
Dick’s decision to pull funding from Childers’ planned hydrotherapy pool shocks the community
CHILDERS’ hydrotherapy pool is again nothing more than a pipe dream.
Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett and then-Health Minister Lawrence Springborg announced the much-needed health facility prior to the state election.
The plan was going to see $300,000 injected into the region for the development, which Forest View CEO Jenny Nixon described as being on the “wish list” for years.
That is where it will return, after Health Minister Cameron Dick said it was not on the cards.
“Unfortunately, I am advised by the Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service that this project was not funded and will not be proceeding at this time,” Mr Dick said.
Mr Bennett went straight on the attack, lamenting Mr Dick’s decision to dump a “fully costed commitment” that was “vital” to the region.
“ALP Health Minister Cameron Dick has made a lot of noise recently about supporting vital community-based preventative health services – services which reduce the rate of hospitalisation and take the pressure off our hospital system,” Mr Bennett said.
“Yet at the first opportunity he had to deliver such services to our local community, he has failed.”
Mr Bennett has been drawn on the hydrotherapy pool’s status several times since the election defeat, both by residents and the Town & Country.
As far as he was concerned, there was no reason why the project shouldn’t go ahead, because he said it was fully funded and not tied to re-election.
He reiterated that claim earlier this week, and said the LNP had a fully-costed plan for the delivery of health projects that were not part of the Strong Choices plan.
“Mr Dick appears to be cherry-picking,” Mr Bennett said.
“The same funding program provided for the provision of maternity services in Ingham – which Mr Dick last week claimed was proceeding – while here in Burnett he claims he now does not have the funds to proceed with the commitment to the local Childers community.”
Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service chief executive Adrian Pennington said his organisation had not been involved in any discussions.
“The WBHHS have not been involved in any discussions regarding this project and do not have a budget for anything of this nature,” he said.
Stephen Bennett’s office is planning a protest march. For more information, phone (07) 4111 5100.
NOT HAPPY: Member for Burnett Stephen Bennett is disappointed following news Childers hydrotherapy pool will now no longer go ahead. Read his letter on page six.