• Runaway Bay Library

    Libraries funded for the future

    Families in Broadwater can rely on their local library to continue and improve its services after the State delivered $68.4 million funding to 319 public libraries.

    Verity Barton MP, State Member for Broadwater said the funding, including $1,992,849 for Gold Coast City Council, would ensure Queensland’s public libraries would retain their lead as innovative, social and virtual learning spaces.

    “Even though we inherited a huge debt, the Newman Government has continued to prioritise what is important to Broadwater families,” Miss Barton said.

    “Libraries are the cornerstones of lifelong learning throughout the state and this money will support public libraries in 72 councils across Queensland.”

    Arts Minister Ian Walker said the funding would help to develop high-quality library collections electronically, as well as in print, across many genres.

    “Libraries can apply to spend up to 50 per cent of the grant in any year on a priority project such as redesigning library spaces or to foster the library’s role as a technology centre for all,” Mr Walker said.
    “We’re working with councils around the state to help develop the best libraries to suit local needs.

    “Supporting our public libraries is part of the State Government’s drive to provide arts for all Queenslanders.”

    Mr Walker said the public library grants were calculated based on populations, with a number of weightings applied for population age, growth rate and location.

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    Get in the Game in Broadwater

    Queenslanders love their sport, but cost of living pressures have often put playing sport or participating in recreational activities out of the reach of many. That’s why the Queensland Government promised at the election to get more kids outside and active through our flagship Get in the Game program.

     

    This initiative has several elements including providing vouchers to children who might not otherwise be able to afford it. Whether it be nippers at the beach, one of the football codes, netball, hockey, basketball after school or another sport, playing the game and covering the cost of registration fees and equipment is now a lot easier. These are real benefits that are helping Broadwater families ease their cost of living pressure.

     

    Of course we all know that obesity is at epidemic levels in Australia, and Queensland is unfortunately no exception. As the leading preventable cause of premature death in the state, obesity is Queensland’s biggest killer, leading to shorter life expectancy, diminished quality of life, and an ever-expanding cost to the health system and the economy.

     

    One of the quickest ways to slow then reverse this trend is through exercise. Through the Government’s Get in the Game program we are investing in healthy, active futures for kids on the Gold Coast Coast and giving Queensland children a path to better health and fitness. Sadly this focus was lacking in Queensland under previous governments, but we are setting things right.

     

    Queenslanders have embraced Get in the Game in unprecedented numbers, and in response the Government has tripled tripled funding over three years from $16 million to $47.8 million to support grassroots sport and recreation across Queensland.

     

    Under the program, almost 60,000 vouchers have been made available to help Queensland families with sport and recreation membership costs. On the Gold Coast alone we have issued more than 9817 vouchers to be used at more than 288 clubs in the area, which is a fantastic result.

     

    Better still, 33 per cent of these recipients have said they had never been a member of a sports club before. But the best bit is the feedback we’re getting from parents and clubs right across the coast. Parents can now let their son or daughter play the game they love despite hard financial times, and are no longer faced with the prospect of letting one child play while another misses out. Meanwhile coaches are finding themselves with fresh new faces in their teams as more families can now afford to participate. Of course, the real winners here are the kids who are out on the paddocks with their mates and developing healthy lifestyles to boot.

     

    The latest ABS figures show we are winning the fight to keep young people in sport – with Queensland ahead of the other states for boys in the traditional ‘drop-out’ ages of 15-17.

    The Get in the Game program also involves upgrading facilities. So far we’ve invested more than $24 million in developing better services and facilities for sport and recreation clubs right across the state.

     

    On the Gold Coast, we’ve put $1,844,917 into helping clubs grow their membership, and improve facilities. This has included $100,000 to Tweed Heads and Coolangatta SLSC Inc to construct a gymnasium and training room.  $87,602 to Merrimac Soccer Club Inc to upgrade lighting on junior fields.  $10,000 to Gold Coast Hockey Association Inc to conduct administration and governance training.   $9,990 to  Surfers Paradise Outrigger Canoe Club Incorporated to conduct a membership drive and purchase equipment to support outrigger canoeing at Southport.

     

    Like the rest of my LNP colleagues, I am committed to giving boys and girls living on the Gold Coast a path to better health and fitness through encouraging involvement in recreation and sport. It’s about giving our children a passport to better health and fitness and a future full of opportunities in this great section of our State.

     

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    New boat ramps delivered for Broadwater

    Work on two boat ramps at Hollywell will start soon as part of the ongoing commitment that the Newman Government has made to restore our waterways as a hub of recreational and tourist activity.

    State Member for Broadwater, Verity Barton MP, said that the works are an important step in continuing to deliver the best possible access to and management of the waterways of the Gold Coast

    “The Jasmine Avenue Boat Ramp and the Holly Avenue Boat Ramp in Hollywell have reached the end of their useful lives” Miss Barton said.

    “The Newman Government is delivering on its commitments by ensuring Broadwater’s waterways are accessible and useable by the local community. These two facilities will ensure that there is safe access to the Broadwater for waterways users.

    Gold Coast Waterways Authority has allocated $500,000 in the Waterways Management Program in the 2014/2015 financial year for the reconstruction of these two facilities. The works are being undertaken in partnership with the City of Gold Coast.

    The reconstruction of both ramps will occur at the same time, meaning that both ramps will be closed at the same time for a number of months. The works are expected to commence within the next month with completion planned within a short length of time, well before the start of busy summer months.

    “The upgrade of these facilities in time for summer will be of huge benefit to the residents of Broadwater. The completion will coincide with the busiest use period for the ramps, and I welcome this much-needed investment in local waterways infrastructure.

    Users are advised to use alternative facilities at the Howard Avenue boat ramp and Ray Street boat ramp in Runaway Bay, and Donald Ave boat ramp and Jabiru Island boat ramp in Paradise Point.

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    Kids Get Started again with sport funding

    Broadwater families have been encouraged to Get in the Game and submit their applications for the fourth round of the hugely popular Get Started funding program that opened today.

    State Member for Broadwater, Miss Verity Barton MP, said the initiative was successfully lowering the cost of living for local families with 643 vouchers issued in her electorate since the program commenced.

    “Get Started officially opens for applications on 15 July and provides vouchers valued up to $150 to help kids whose families can least afford for them to join a sport or recreation club.”

    Miss Verity Barton MP said Get Started was designed to encourage more young people to get into sport or recreation, and to ease the financial burden on families.

    “As a government, we are committed to helping young Queenslanders be active,” she said.

    Miss Verity Barton MP said under the first three rounds of the Get Started program almost 54,000 vouchers were issued to help families who struggle with the cost of living to give their children the opportunity to join one of our sport or recreation clubs.

    “I strongly encourage local sport and recreation clubs, and families to take advantage of this wonderful program and check if they are eligible to take part.”

    Get Started is part of the Queensland Government’s $47.8 million Get in the Game initiative.

    For more information on how to apply for a Get Started voucher, visit www.nprsr.qld.gov.au.

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  • Government to support Broadwater’s pensioners

    Broadwater’s pensioners who benefit from concession payments will not suffer any reduction in payments after the Queensland Government announced it would cover the cuts announced by the Federal Government.

    State Member for Broadwater, Verity Barton MP, said the Queensland Government had listened to the concerns of the local community and would act.

    “Pensioners and older Queenslanders have told us that they simply can’t wear the cost of filling the gap between Queensland’s increased contribution, and the Commonwealth Government’s concessions cuts and increased fees and taxes,” Miss Barton said.

    “We’ve not only listened to Queenslanders, but we’ve acted on the issue, within the space of two days, to reinstate the full level of pensioner and senior concessions which was previously covered by the Commonwealth.

    “Passing on a portion of the Commonwealth’s cuts to pensioner concessions is clearly not a decision the community would accept.

    “This LNP State Government has a strong plan for Broadwater’s pensioners, demonstrated in this week’s state budget which increased concessions by $26 million. In contrast, Queensland Labor remains silent on the carbon tax, one of the biggest cost of living impacts on pensioners.”

    Premier Campbell Newman said the Commonwealth should be bearing the burden of these cuts, not Queenslanders. “We will be continuing to send a clear message to the Commonwealth that Queenslanders won’t stand for these kinds of cuts,” Mr Newman said.

    “It is the Commonwealth Government that’s caused this problem with pensioner cuts and increased charges. We’re very conscious of the ‘double whammy’ impact of the Federal Government’s changes to pensions and the removal of concessions funding.

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  • Budget delivers a Strong Plan for a Brighter Future for Queensland and Broadwater

    Verity Barton MP, State Member for Broadwater, said the 2014-15 State Budget delivered today is a fiscally responsible Budget that continues to deliver the Government’s Strong Plan for a Brighter Future.

    “This Budget sees measured increases in education, health and community services spending without introducing or raising any new taxes or cutting services. We are delivering on our plan to get Queensland back on track,” she said.

    The Queensland Government continues to make significant progress in restoring our State’s finances, growing a four pillar economy, revitalising frontline services and funding infrastructure projects to create jobs.

    “More than 60,000 jobs were created in Queensland last year but we must reduce debt to sustain that growth so we can keep building on our Strong Plan for a Brighter Future,” she said.

    Health funding is up six per cent with more than $1 billion for the Gold Coast Health and Hospital Service to deliver public health care services.

    Education funding is up seven per cent with nearly $800,000 invested in Broadwater’s schools. There is also funding to continue the transition of Year 7 to high school and investment in our schools for the future.

    “Education is an investment in our future and the Government’s Great Results Guarantee will improve student performance,” Miss Barton said.

    Further investment in community services, the establishment of the Gold Coast Police Hub, continued investment in the Police helicopter and the investment in the Safe Night Out Strategy honour our pledge to make Queensland the safest place to live and raise a family.

    The Government is committed to retaining its support for Queenslanders who need it most with a 9.9 per cent increase in funding for State-funded concessions.

    The Government is also investing nearly $8 million in Gold Coast waterways.

    “The Broadwater, the jewel in our crown, is one of the most utilised and popular waterways in Queensland and I welcome $4.3 million to help achieve improved access and safety.” Miss Barton said.

    “As a result of this Government’s disciplined decision-making, we are on track to deliver a Budget surplus in 2015-16 for the first time in a decade but more needs to be done. Population growth and ageing will see projected growth in expenses in areas like health and education and unless strong action is taken the Budget will slip back into deficit.

    “We must reduce debt to sustain growth so we can keep building on our Strong Plan for a Brighter Future. We need to reduce the State’s $80 billion debt and the annual $4 billion interest bill and this Budget outlines our plan to secure our finances by making the strongest and smartest choice to reduce debt,” Miss Barton said.

    Not everyone will agree with every part of our plan but Queenslanders will now have funding certainty for schools, hospitals and the infrastructure we need to secure Queensland’s future growth.

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