Council signs enterprise body for fresh three- year agreement
TEL’s role retained
TOWNSVILLE Enterprise has agreed on a new three- year funding agreement with Townsville City Council, securing its future as an economic development organisation.
TEL will receive $ 740,000 this year as part of a new service- level agreement but that could increase with the organisation to ask for more funding to lobby for projects at the federal election. TEL received $ 859,000 from council last year, including $ 125,000 for the state election campaign.
Under the agreement, TEL will receive $ 305,000 each year for core administrative tasks for the next three years, as well as additional funding for “agreed services”.
In 2015- 16, the agreed services will include $ 435,000 relating to regional tourism and events, regional development and event attendance.
Planning and Development Committee chair Cr Tony Parsons said the council would continue to work alongside TEL to lobby for government funding for major projects and infrastructure in the city.
“A continued arrangement with TEL will ensure that together we can work towards greater outcomes for our city,” Cr Parsons said.
Deputy Mayor Vern Veitch, who has previously flagged stripping TEL of its economic development role, said council couldn’t afford funding the organisation at current levels.
“We’ve seen a 15 per cent reduction across the board in operational funding for environmental services in the Budget. I really struggle with no reduction to Townsville Enterprise’s budget,” he said.
Mayor Jenny Hill said Cr Veitch had the opportunity to move amendments to the 2015/ 16 Budget.
“There were opportunities to amend the Budget for savings,” she said. “Cr Veitch did not propose any amendments to the Budget nor did he propose any amendments when the Budget was finally adopted.”
Townsville Enterprise chief executive Patricia O’Callaghan said the agreement enabled the organisation to focus on the key priorities of attracting investment, creating jobs, boosting confidence and growing the region’s economy.
“The ongoing support … enables the Townsville Enterprise team to work on projects that market the Townsville North Queensland region as an ideal location to invest, work, live and visit,” she said.
A continued arrangement with TEL will ensure … we can work towards greater
outcomes CR TONY PARSONS