Central Queensland's call for black spot funding answered
CENTRAL Queenslanders are set to benefit from two black spot funding announcements made in a 24-hour period this week.
On Wednesday, Capricornia MP Michelle Landry hosted Federal Minister for Regional Development, Regional Communications and Rural Health, Senator Fiona Nash, who made one announcement at Emu Park.
Ms Nash announced that mobile black spots near Emu Park, Yeppoon, the Sarina Range north of Koumala and Clermont were among the top-four priority areas where better coverage will be provided.
On Thursday, Ms Nash, while visiting Gladstone, announced new mobile base stations in Rules Beach, Upper Ulam Rd, Dawson Development Rd, and Taroom would bring a much-needed boost to mobile coverage, providing benefits to emergency service operators, businesses, and residents.
"The active cooperation of the industry in the Mobile Black Spots Program to date has been strong with 499 new or upgraded base stations covering around 3,000 black spots already rolled out under Round 1 of the Coalition Government's program," Federal Member for Flynn Ken O'Dowd said.
"This includes 10 new base station to serve Bucca, Coalstoun Lakes, Mulgildie, Durong, Bogantungan - Willows, Rannes, Ubobo, Burnett Highway between Rockhampton and Biloela, Dingo, and Capricorn Hwy.
"This new commitment will improve mobile coverage along major transport routes, in small communities and in locations prone to experiencing natural disasters, as well as addressing unique mobile coverage problems such as areas with high seasonal demand," Ms Nash said.
Ms Landry said four key areas had been endorsed by her after being nominated by local constituents and local councils.
"Mobile coverage is something city people take for granted," Ms Landry said.
"We are working hard to ensure the same services are provided to people in regional Australia like Clermont, Sarina Range, Emu Park and Yeppoon as well.
Clarke Creek, Marlborough, Gargett and people in the Mt Chalmers Road area between Rockhampton and Yeppoon are already enjoying improved mobile services under the program, after previous lobbying by Ms Landry.
Ms Landry said eliminating mobile back spot locations would unlock opportunities for farmers and businesses previously impacted by little or no mobile connectivity.
"Better mobile coverage means a quicker response to car accidents or bushfires; tourism operators can attract more guests; children can research school assignments or adults can study at university online; farmers can sell their crops on the futures markets while sitting on the tractor; and people don't miss out on business or social calls or texts," she said.