Rockhampton election candidates L-R: Tony Hopkins, Christian Shepherd, Laura Barnard and Torin O'Brien.
Rockhampton election candidates L-R: Tony Hopkins, Christian Shepherd, Laura Barnard and Torin O'Brien.

REVEALED: Rocky candidates' plans for infrastructure, roads

EVERY election The Morning Bulletin provides candidates the opportunity to inform Rockhampton region voters on how they would address some of the region's key issues.

From improvements on road safety and healthcare, to how they each plan to tackle the staggering crime rate, learn more about your local candidate's take on five pressing issues across the week.

A new question and answer will be revealed daily over the course of this week.

However, it should be noted that some candidates did not partake in the process.

Question One: What are your infrastructure and road priorities for Rockhampton?


Legalise Cannabis Queensland's candidate for Rockhampton Laura Barnard.
Legalise Cannabis Queensland's candidate for Rockhampton Laura Barnard.

Laura Barnard - Legalise Cannabis QLD (Party)

Improving our region's existing infrastructure must be a priority to ensure future projects are as beneficial to our economy and community as we predict.

Any new proposed developments should be thoroughly examined for optimal strategic implication; moving forward with extensive forethought and thorough planning is my promise.

Certainly, new infrastructure must be decided on ultimately with community consultation and feasibility insight; this is my guarantee.

Whether this means my own proposals, council, state and or federal level future endeavours; I don't want to see taxpayer money wasted, nor our working men and women go under-appreciated.

The benefit of a minor party is that our region will still get state and federal project opportunities to make advances on.

I have noticed a true lack of adequate footpaths and undercover bus stops in our region; along with road maintenance these matters are integral to support the growth of our region.

In speaking with our community, a lack of adequate footpaths certainly presents a huge disadvantage for those visiting, or community members who have disabilities, our elderly and families.

Ensuring we upgrade our shop fronts and services for appropriate disability access will compliment such improvements.

This must include automatic doors where appropriate, otherwise the efforts are spoiled for many.

Many residents have expressed concerns over diagonal car parks, stating they bank up too close to traffic lights and stop sign intersections.

Timely so, many have also mentioned road lines are in need of re-marking.

I would propose serious consideration to our traffic light intersections to be revised.

In some instances, these intersections have obstructed view of oncoming traffic or poorly timed light signal intervals.

Potentially reworking some of these intersections could see a reduction in vehicular collisions and/or incidents.

I will always support beneficial advances to our manufacturing, education and health facilities.


BUS TOUR: Candiates for Rockhampton, Barry O'Rourke takes a ride on the Cuts Bus last week.
BUS TOUR: Candiates for Rockhampton, Barry O'Rourke takes a ride on the Cuts Bus last week.

Barry O'Rourke - Australian Labor Party

Take a look around our city right now and you can see so much going on. The local infrastructure spend under the Palaszczuk Government has been huge, especially during the past three years.

That's part of the reason why, at a time when so many areas are struggling, our local economy is doing well and we have hundreds of job vacancies going.

I'm determined to see that continue over the next three years.

Some of the projects committed to by the Palaszczuk Labor Government include Rookwood Weir, Lawrie Street Upgrade, Brown Park Stage 1, Rockhampton Ring Road and a $31m upgrade to Rocky Hospital, including a new Cardiac Hybrid Theatre and refurbished mental health ward.

We'll also establish a rail manufacturing hub to create 500 local jobs, deliver a new North Rocky ambulance station and get on with stage one of the TAFE Centre of Excellence at CQUniversity.

That's a huge pipeline of investment that will build on our track record of the past three years and support local jobs and businesses.

I've looked at the commitments from the other candidates and while some of them talk a good game, none of them have come within a bull's roar of matching what the Palaszczuk Labor Government will deliver.

Labor is the only choice for local jobs this election.


KAP candidate for Rockhampton Christian Shepherd
KAP candidate for Rockhampton Christian Shepherd

Christian Shepherd - KAP

If elected to represent Rockhampton, my infrastructure priorities will be constructing additional weirs and dams to exponentially increase our region's agricultural revenue. This is by far the greatest leap our local economy can make with a comparatively small capital investment. Agriculture has proven to be a strong performer through this global pandemic and the world's demand for safe, quality produce isn't dwindling in the foreseeable future. Additional weirs along the Fitzroy River, the Connors River Dam as well as dredging the Fitzroy River are all viable options for increasing our water storage. Katter's Australian Party also supports the redevelopment of GKI as this will greatly increase the demand for the services of tradesmen and support industries within the region.

I have promised to fund the Rockhampton Motorsport Precinct, the CQ TAFE Centre of Excellence and industrial infrastructure within the newly established Gracemere/Stanwell State Development Area. I will also ensure that the medical PPE warehouse announced for construction within Rockhampton to service our regional health services is also a medical PPE factory, to secure our PPE supply indefinitely.

My road priorities are ensuring that the Lawrie St upgrade in Gracemere is not a false promise, as Labor's have time and time again proven to be. I will also be pushing for Main Roads to complete a feasibility study for annexing additional roads into state control to facilitate a third bridge across the Fitzroy River within the city limits. The existing bridges are insufficient to our needs and the ring road will not appropriately mitigate our inner-city traffic. I will also prioritise large-scale projects for reconstruction of our southern highway to end the decades of perpetual patch jobs being endlessly performed.


Dominic Doblo - Independent

Gracemere High School with a major emphasis on agriculture and manufacturing. This would include tailored programs for those high school starters, who show interest in these sectors so that their full potential can be reached.

Don't waste money on the Rookwood bathtub (it would be smaller than the barrage). Start immediately on the Connors dam then develop the gap dam - starting at 2,000,000 mega litres.

Build a third bridge to connect designated roadways.


CQ VISIT: Prime Minister Scott Morrison stands with Rockhampton LNP candidate Tony Hopkins earlier this month.
CQ VISIT: Prime Minister Scott Morrison stands with Rockhampton LNP candidate Tony Hopkins earlier this month.

Tony Hopkins - LNP

The LNP has a plan to get Queensland out of recession.

The New Bradfield Scheme and Four-laning the Bruce Hwy from Gympie to Cairns are visionary infrastructure projects.

The New Bradfield will generate 2000 megawatts of hydro-electricity, reduce reef run-off and irrigate an area larger than Tasmania.

The Bruce Highway project will create hundreds of jobs here in Rockhampton and CQ and thousands of jobs across the state.

The LNP will ensure that the "real" Rookwood Weir is finally completed.

"I look forward to working with Michelle Landry, Ken O'Dowd and Matt Canavan to end the delays and get this vital project done".

I am also looking forward to working with not only the Federal Government but with the Rockhampton Regional Council on delivering the Rocky Sports Stadium.

"This is an exciting project that will bring more professional sports and entertainment events to Rocky. This will create new jobs in tourism and hospitality, and

being walking distance, breathe new life into the CBD."

The LNP's infrastructure boom will require skilled infrastructure workers, one of our major projects is to fully fund CQU's TAFE Centre of Excellence.

"I congratulate Professor Klomp and the CQU team on their blueprint for a one-stop shop for vocational training. My earthmoving, quarrying and transport business has experienced first hand Labor's neglect of TAFE. I fully support the concept of a blue collar university that will provide the tradies, miners, railway workers, truck drivers and mobile plant operators that will make Rockhampton a growth town, not a ghost town.


Green Party candidate for Rockhampton Mick Jones.
Green Party candidate for Rockhampton Mick Jones.

Mick Jones - The Greens

We can't spend big on roads if we're just cutting other services to pay for it. The Greens will make big business pay its fair share, to fund the policies that Queensland needs:

We'll impose a big bank levy of 0.05 per cent on the five biggest banks operating in Queensland and raise over $4.6 billion over four years.

We'll introduce a 75 per cent tax on the value gains big property developers make from favourable land re-zonings to raise $7.8 billion over four years.

And we'll increase coal and LNG royalties to 35 per cent and 20 per cent for base and precious metals, raising an extra $55 billion over four years.

Our priority for transport infrastructure is public transport.

The Greens will expand bus networks in regional cities and towns including Rockhampton, aiming for a bus every 10 minutes on major road corridors, and make public transport free statewide.

We'll establish a $4 billion public transport expansion fund to improve and expand public transport across Queensland, covering reforms of the bus network and high-speed rail.

Our priority in industrial infrastructure is to build up the supply lines, resource networks, freight logistics needed to support the new industries we know are coming.

Instead of sending raw resources offshore, we should build the capacity to develop those resources here.

That takes infrastructure, and good supply networks.

Our plan is to build a flagship wind turbine factory in Rocky, and a prototype green steel facility in Gladstone.

Their role is to blaze a trail for private investment in that sector, while ensuring that local workers and businesses are prioritised.