The Queensland government has announced their plan to fast-track Local Housing Action Plans in rural and remote communities, in coordination with the Western Queensland Alliance of Council (WQAC).
Deputy Premier and Minister for Local Government Steven Miles made the announcement in Charleville today at the WQAC Assembly, explaining that $200,000 has been allocated to assist the 22 councils that make up the WQAC, in delivery action plans.
"Community housing is an area of concern right across the State, and the rural and remote communities of Western Queensland face their own unique challenges in this area," Mr Miles said.
"There's no question that available housing is vital to a community's economic sustainability and growth.
"Housing is also one of the key areas the Rural and Remote Councils Compact is looking to address, and I know the Western Queensland Alliance of Councils has been leading the way.
"We'll work with the organisation to identify a number of pilot sites and, once the pilots are done, use the learnings to inform how the action plans are rolled out to other councils.
"Our local councils understand the individual needs of their communities better than anyone, so it's incredibly important that the WQAC plays a key role in this initiative."
The Queensland Government committed to Local Housing Action Plans with the Queensland Housing and Homelessness Action Plan 2021-2025, which endeavours to identify and solve issues regarding remote community housing.
Minister for Communities and Housing Leeanne Enoch said the state Government was committed to working with councils on the action plan, which is backed by $2.9 billion in investments, including the $1 billion Housing Investment Fund, making it the largest ever concentrated investment in Queensland.
"As part of the Housing and Homelessness Action Plan, the Queensland Housing Investment Growth Initiative will deliver accelerated social housing supply of 7,400 social and affordable homes, including 2,765 social homes under our QuickStarts Qld program," Ms Enoch said.
"This is in addition to the 2,480 new social homes already commenced under the Queensland Housing Strategy since 2017."
One of the Mayors backing the plan is Balonne Shire Council Mayor and Chair of the South West Queensland Regional Organisation of Councils Samantha O'Toole.
Ms O'Toole thanks the Queensland Government, saying that a lack of housing is a major issue in rural and remote communities.
"By fast-tracking the Local Housing Action Plans, our communities will see the benefits far sooner than expected, improving liveability and attracting more families to Western Queensland," she said.
"This $200,000 initiative will make a real difference, and is a wonderful example of what can be achieved when our two levels of government work together."
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