Katter predicts mining and ag will pay for Brisbane Olympics

Katter gloom dampens Olympic glow in NQ

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Katter's Australian Party leader Rob Katter fears greatly reduced expenditure for North and regional Queensland in the wake of the successful Brisbane Olympics bid. Photo - Scott Radford-Chisholm.

Katter's Australian Party leader Rob Katter fears greatly reduced expenditure for North and regional Queensland in the wake of the successful Brisbane Olympics bid. Photo - Scott Radford-Chisholm.

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Wednesday evening's announcement that Brisbane will host the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games was not greeted with the same enthusiasm in parts of North Queensland as it was in the state capital.

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Wednesday evening's announcement that Brisbane will host the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games was not greeted with the same enthusiasm in parts of North Queensland as it was in the state capital.

While people were dancing jubilantly on the banks of the Brisbane River following the announcement in Tokyo, Katter's Australian Party MPs were warning that it would mean an economic "dark age" would descend on north and regional Queensland.

KAP leader and Traeger MP Robbie Katter said that mining and agriculture will be the industries footing the bill for the Olympics, and accused the Palaszczuk government of fanfare, financial trickery and creative spin to justify what he said would be a $17.8 billion invoice for the event.

"Despite the widespread reporting that the event would only cost $5.8 billion, and would break even when profits were considered, the true cost to Queensland's economy will be far greater," he said.

He predicted an up to $12 billion spend on "critical" infrastructure, such as the $1 billion redevelopment of the Gabba, to prepare south east Queensland to host the Games.

Also read: NQ infrastructure the loser from Olympic bid - Katter

The federal government has already committed up to $6 billion to pre-Games infrastructure as part of the 50:50 co-contribution funding pool with the Queensland government.

"The awarding of this event is no great victory for Queenslanders, let alone those of us in north and regional communities who may see an event or two held locally if we're lucky," Mr Katter said.

"We are going to experience a government-imposed 'dark ages' period over the next decade, which will mean more spending in the south east and less in the regions; this is already a chronic problem.

"We already have to fight for our fair share of funding for basic infrastructure like roads and health care, let alone the sort of nation-building projects that are essential to building industries, creating jobs and growing regional communities.

"This includes projects like the Bradfield Scheme, the rail line into the Galilee Basin and the widespread expansion of the biofuels industry, and we need this sort of investment more than ever given the effects of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic."

LGAQ welcomes announcement

Local Government Association of Queensland president Mark Jamieson described the decision of the International Olympic Committee to award the 2032 Games to Brisbane as a very proud moment for all Queenslanders.

"The successful Brisbane 2032 bid is a great example of what can be achieved when all three levels of government work together in partnership," Cr Jamieson, who celebrated the win with his community on the Sunshine Coast, said.

"Now is the time to galvanise that partnership and build on this good work to ensure we not only deliver the world's best Olympic and Paralympic Games, but also the infrastructure, tourism and economic benefits that should flow to Queensland."

Call for offset fund

KAP Hinchinbrook MP Nick Dametto believed the Queensland community, including those in the south east, were deeply divided over the Olympic Games coming to Brisbane.

He said according to newspaper survey results, less than 50 per cent of people supported the event.

The YouGov Galaxy survey showed 45 per cent statewide support for the bid, with 16 per cent undecided and 27 per cent opposed.

It didn't list preferences by location within the state, but showed support was strongest among the 18 to 34 age group, at 55 per cent.

Generation X gave the bid 41 per cent support, while Baby Boomers were more enthusiastic, at 46 per cent.

Mr Dametto said the topic would continue to divide the state over the next 10 years.

"The Premier is hell-bent on having her party, however KAP has no plans to let the regions suffer as a result," he said.

"Regional Queensland should be petrified of what's set to be a $17.8 billion party in Brisbane and, at the very least, we should be demanding a nation-building offset fund so that we can continue to develop North and regional Queensland.

"If this isn't achieved you can almost guarantee there will not be one significant dam, rail line or transmission line built in this state designed to help our essential industries grow."

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