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Federal government baffled by Queensland’s refusal of millions for rural doctors

Neil Breen
Article image for Federal government baffled by Queensland’s refusal of millions for rural doctors

Queensland is refusing to accept $65 million from the Commonwealth’s purse to help fund transport and rural health projects. 

The federal government has committed $50 million to the Brisbane Metro and $15 million for the Royal Flying Doctor Service to develop a Townsville base.

Urban Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher told Neil Breen under “well-established arrangements”, Commonwealth funding for projects must be passed through the state governments.

But he says Treasurer Cameron Dick is refusing to play ball and “pass the money on”.

“He’s written, in fact, to Lord Mayor Schrinner to that effect.

“Brisbane City Council is well underway with [Brisbane Metro], they’re spending money, and the Commonwealth wants to make good on our commitment.”

Mr Fletcher said Mr Dick’s position is “hard to understand”.

“He says he wants some special treatment for Queensland that other states don’t get in relation to GST.

“But it’s an argument that makes very little sense…”

Press PLAY below to hear the full interview 

Neil Breen
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