Approximately 20 residents and others were in attendance to hear from and ask questions of the local Federal MP. Several BeCA Committee members were in attendance.
Mal Brough spoke of the frustrations his party was having with the Senate. He aired his concern over the electoral processes which allowed minority groups crucial Senate seats and gave them enormous power to block legislation which had been brought down by a formally elected Federal Parliament. Mal covered a wide range of subjects including hospitals, government policy and education,
He took questions from the floor. BeCA asked for an update on possible solutions to the current traffic conditions around the southern end of the Sunshine Coast. It must be remembered that the Federal Government’s only road responsibility in this area is the Bruce Highway or roadways which effect traffic on the Bruce Highway.
Mal spoke of the huge road upgrade of the Bruce Highway from just south of Caloundra up towards Maroochydore, the costing for which had been approved.
He also spoke of the proposed Bells Creek Arterial Road (Stage 1 is currently being constructed by Stockland and will provide a second entry exit for residents) and how if the road was fully built through to the Roys Rd Interchange now, it would improve traffic numbers and flow on the Bruce Highway. Currently this road is estimated to cost 100 million dollars but is only to be built in stages by Stockland as land sells in Caloundra South. At this stage, the final completion of the road could be as far as 12 years away.
Mal Brough said he had approached the State Government and offered 4 million dollars per year for the 8 years to cover Stockland’s servicing costs to borrow all of the money now and complete the road through to the Roys Road intersection in the near future instead of staging the construction over the next 10 or so years.
He said the response from the State Government was that currently that road was not a priority for them and anyway if they did build it they would probably be required to upgrade it to 4 lanes. There appears to be a contradiction in the State Government’s response.
This is Mal Brough’s update on the situation from his perspective and seems extremely attractive to residents who were at the meeting. However we can’t guarantee the proposed money from the Federal Government would be sufficient to cover Stockland’s costs for servicing the loan. Nor have we heard an official response from the State Government.
But to the lay person, it seems a great deal and a way for the construction of valuable infra structure to be brought forward, infra structure of which this part of Queensland has been starved of over recent years.