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Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage
The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP
Federal Minister for Agriculture, the Hon. Warren Truss
Queensland Minister for Natural Resources, the Hon. Stephen Robertson.
Press Conference - Stamford Plaza, Brisbane
Friday, 11 April 2003
Today we've got a very positive announcement for Queensland regions. The Commonwealth Government in Queensland are today announcing $16 million will be released to Queensland regions in order to assist with capacity building, foundation funding that's necessary to get the regional plans up and running for Natural Resource Management.
This is a tremendously positive announcement under the Natural Heritage Trust. It means that Queensland and the commonwealth are very close to finalising agreement now on the bilateral arrangements between the Federal and State Governments. We're putting in place an interim financial agreement to release this money.
We're very keen to see the action on the ground up and running, and this $16 million is going to be very much welcomed by regions right across Queensland. It shows that the regions, the commonwealth and the states, in partnership, can move ahead effectively to address some of the major Natural Resource management issues that affect this state.
What it also means is that the literally hundreds of people who are on the ground doing work such as Bushcare, Coastcare and Landcare, all those people that coordinate the local efforts can plan ahead with some certainty knowing that they'll be paid next week. This interim funding arrangement ensures that they can stay on the ground, they can stay in rural areas of Queensland doing the necessary work to repair our environment.