Minister calls on Federal Government to fulfil Palm Island promise

Queensland’s Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe has called on his federal counterpart to fulfil the LNP’s pre-election commitment to help Palm Island residents gain access to clean drinking water.

Mr Hinchliffe said the Palaszczuk Government had provided more than $6 million to tackle five of the top six priority water projects that had been identified on the island but it was now time for the federal government to sign off on its promise.

“In the lead up to the federal election, the LNP sailed into town on a raft of promises that included $2 million for Palm Island water,” he said.

“Now it’s time for Canberra to pick up the pen and sign the cheque.”

In Queensland Parliament today, Mr Hinchliffe announced that he had written to the Federal Minister for Indigenous Australians, asking him to deliver on his commitments to the people of Palm Island.

Member for Townsville Scott Stewart said the five priority projects slated for completion through Palaszczuk Government funding were:

  • Installing a monitoring system.
  • Thoroughly cleaning the main drinking water tank, including replacing the roof and making it vermin proof.
  • Decommissioning two water treatment plants and replacing them with one large tank.
  • Installing more backwash and sludge tanks.
  • Installing a new raw water line from the Solomon Dam.

“It’s absolutely disgraceful that as soon as the Morrison Government has disingenuously thanked Queensland, it turns its back on us,” Mr Stewart said.

“But we need the Federal Government to provide the $2 million it promised so we can complete the sixth project, which is installing a new rising main from the water treatment plant to the main reservoir.

“Last week, cleaning of the island’s five water reservoirs was finished, but the water is still going to look a little discoloured.

“For the time being, however, the boil water notice is still in place and will be lifted by the council in consultation with Queensland Health.”

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