Differences on Keppel investment
MEMBER for Whitsunday Jason Costigan has described Labor’s decision to commit $25 million into Great Keppel Island as “outrageous”.
Labor announced last month that it would pump millions into connecting the island to mainland power and water, and the demolition of the old resort.
Great Keppel Island will be reinvigorated after Tower Holdings struck a deal to sell its lease to a Singapore-led consortium.
The local MP asked Tourism Minister Kate Jones in a question on notice at State Parliament.
“Can the minister explain why 50 per cent of the Palaszczuk Labor Government’s $50 million fund to rejuvenate Greater Barrier Reef Islands is to be spent on just one island – Great Keppel Island – in the Labor-held electorate of Keppel,” he said.
“Why are the Whitsunday Islands being shafted by Labor? Great Keppel Island gets $25 million, whilst our own islands get the crumbs. It’s just outrageous.”
But Ms Jones hit back at Costigan’s claims.
“What has Costo invested in the Great Barrier Reef islands? Zero, zip, zilch.
“This is classic Costo – he’s all talk and no action,” she told the Whitsunday Times.
“During the State Budget, we committed $25 million to partner with tourism operators to get our Great Barrier Reef island resorts back up and running. We want to see these tourism hubs restored to their former glory.
“Since announcing this fund, we’ve been overwhelmed with interest from tourism operators keen to partner with the government. We’re the only side of politics that’s invested in the Great Barrier Reef islands.
“I’m calling on the Prime Minister to match our $25 million commitment to rejuvenate Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef islands and give a shot in the arm to the local tourism industry.”