Mixed reaction to Qld’s big health budget


* “If you … need to go to Redcliffe Hospital, you need to wait to 2028 for those hospital beds to be available. Those hospital beds needed to be available yesterday” – Australian Medical Association Queensland president Maria Boulton acknowledged the record spend in health, but said an increase of 5.6 per cent was only keeping up with inflation.

* “Lets be honest … we’ve been underfunded against the national average for a decade” – Queensland Alliance for Mental Health CEO Jennifer Black commended the government for creating a dedicated funding stream, but said more needed to be done.

* “Our members still can’t get their breaks on a 12 hour shift, they can’t finish on time” – the United Workers Union’s Fiona Scalon said no extra resources for ambulance workers was a disappointment.

* “When you start talking about tiers of 30 and 40 per cent for royalty rates … you’re really setting a damaging precedent in Queensland” – the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies’ Warren Pearce said a hike in coal royalties could scare international investors.

* “Coal does a lot of damage to the environment and to the climate, and it’s good to see that Queenslanders are going to start getting some of this money back” – the Australian Conservation Foundation’s Jason Lyddieth welcomed the increased coal royalties.

* “The treasurer has made it abundantly clear that there would be no new or increased taxes … It was a bald-faced promise to the Queensland people and now it’s a bald-face lie” – Liberal National Party shadow treasurer David Janetzki said the government had broken its election promise not to increase or create taxes.

* “Queensland is in the grip of a housing crisis, we have more than 50,000 people on our social housing register … a population the size of Gympie” – Queensland Council of Social Service CEO Aimee McVeigh welcomed a commitment to construct more hospitals, but said the government should also build more public housing.

* “It’s long overdue that we have new schools, but we need the teachers and school leaders in those schools” – Queensland Teachers’ Union president Leah Olsson said there was nothing in the budget to address the state’s teacher shortage.

* “We’re enabling one of the biggest constraints, particularly on small to medium businesses, to be reduced so they’re able to grow” – Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland CEO Heidi Cooper was pleased to see payroll relief for some businesses.

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