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Is your Business a Champions of Mature Workers?

 Chris Whiting MP is calling on locals to nominate businesses who are champions for mature workers to be recognised in the Mature Workers Mean Business Awards.

These awards are an important way of recognising those local employers who value the contribution mature aged workers to their businesses.

“About a quarter of the nation’s population are aged 55 and over, but they represent only 18% of the total labour force,” Mr Whiting said.

“The Palaszczuk Government’s Skilling Queenslanders for Work program has assisted many mature aged people in Bancroft into work, or further training.

“If your business is currently benefitting from the experience and dedication of a worker who is over 55, then we want to hear from you,” Mr Whiting said.

To nominate for the awards, for a chance to win a personalised business coaching program visit and tell us in 100 words how your business has benefitted from hiring older workers.

Entries close at 5pm on Friday 26 October 2018.

Grants for local business to go digital

Local small businesses wanting to boost their digital and online presence can now apply for funding of up to $10,000 under the latest round of Small Business Digital Grants.

Small businesses in North Lakes and Deception Bay can use this funding to enhance their digital and online operations, said Chris Whiting MP

“The grants of up to $10,000 will help business owners to work smarter and make the most of online opportunities,” said Chris Whiting

“Some businesses are using the funding to redevelop their websites and boost their social media presence.

“It opens up opportunities for businesses to sell their goods to a broader market online, through social media and websites.

“Since our Advancing Small Business strategy began more than $8.2 million has been provide in grants to over 1,500 small businesses in Queensland.

“Recipients of these grants reported that they expect to take on 2,995 new employees,” said Chris.

Minister for Employment and Small Business Shannon Fentiman said that by investing in Queensland’s small businesses we will grow the economy which will lead to more local jobs.

“The Palaszczuk Government has invested $4.9 million to support almost 1,000 small businesses under this successful program,” said Minister Fentiman.

“Empowering small businesses to be digitally savvy is a key driver of the Advancing Small Business Queensland Strategy 2016-20 to strengthen small business and help them to keep up in our fast growing economy,” said Minister Fentiman.

To be eligible for funding, small businesses must have fewer than 20 employees, have an Australian Business Number (ABN) and be registered for GST, have a turnover of $2 million or less in the last financial year and be based in Queensland.



Applications close on 5 October 2018. For more information including application forms, guidelines, terms and conditions, visit

Do we have the nation’s best fish & chips? Have your say!

 Love your local fish and chip shop? Chris Whiting MP wants you to share your love by voting for them in the Australian Fish and Chip Awards.

“The Australian Fish and Chip Awards are a great opportunity to publicise our local stores on the national stage and show you support the local staff.

“We all grew up eating fish and chips and my kids now reckon it’s their favourite family meal

“My office is close to Rothwell Seafood Café and Want the Food and I can vouch for quality and tastiness of their seafood.

“That’s why I have nominated them for the Australian Fish and Chips Awards.

“I think it would be great recognition for owners such as Rod and Glen and for all the local workers who work in their shop.

“But I know local businesses right across the electorate from North Lakes to Burpengary East are serving up amazing fish and chips,” said Chris Whiting.

Voting is open until September 15, with state award winners being announced on 15 October.

“I want fish and chip loving locals to go online and vote for their favourite store,” said Chris Whiting.

To vote for your local fish and chip shop to be named Queensland’s best visit:

Bruce Gets $12 million Facelift

The Palaszczuk Government investment in the Bruce Highway continues with a 15km resurfacing project between the Pine River Bridge and the Sunshine Coast.

The resurfacing project is a result of the hard work done by local Labor members

“This upgrade will mean a safer commute for locals and travellers heading to the Sunshine Coast,” said Member for Bancroft Chris Whiting.

“Commuters from North Lakes and Deception Bay travelling to Brisbane know we need improvements in the Murrumba Downs stretch of the highway.

“Works will be conducted at night from Sunday to Thursday to help minimise delays for motorists.

“The Moreton Bay region is one of the fastest growing areas in Australia and the Palaszczuk Government is committed to maintaining safer roads to cater for the growth.

“Work on this $12 million upgrade has already begun and will be completed progressively over the rest of the financial year,” said Chris Whiting.

Roadworks can add time to your journey, plan ahead and visit the QLDTraffic website for up-to-date information:

Community Benefit Grant Turns 25 in Style

A commemorative round of grants for 11 special projects across Queensland has been announced, to celebrate 25 years of the Gambling Community Benefit Fund (GCBF)

“The commemorative grants funding round provides total funds of up to $1.25 million, and will be distributed to 11 not-for-profit groups across Queensland.

“For nearly 25 years the GCBF has been supporting local community groups and support services by providing one off grants to help them, help our community,” said Chris Whiting.

There will be 10 grants of $100,000 and 1 grant of $250,000, with applications being accepted for projects with a minimum value of $35,000.

“The commemorative round will be done in two stages, with the first round being an Expression of Interest, and the second where shortlisted applicants will be invited to proceed further.

“The Expression of Interest stage closes at 11:59pm on 31 August, so I encourage all eligible local groups to get in quick,” said Chris Whiting.

Groups eligible to apply must be a Queensland community based not-for-profit group. Further details can be found at:

The Gambling Community Benefit Fund is Queensland’s largest one-off grants program which distributes roughly $54 million annually.

Queensland Seniors Week

Queensland Seniors Week provides opportunities to promote positive community attitudes towards older people and ageing, facilitate community participation, and enhance community connections, aligning with the Queensland Government’s and Council on the Ageing (COTA) Queensland’s vision of building Age-friendly communities in Queensland.

During 18-26 August 2018, Seniors Week will connect communities, providing opportunities for people to share and learn new experiences, discover services and support, and assist in reducing social isolation.

Queensland Seniors Week is coordinated by the Council on the Ageing (COTA) Queensland, which receives Queensland Government funding to collaboratively plan, run and provide subsidies of $100,000 in total to organisations across Queensland for Seniors Week events and activities.

For more information on Seniors Week or to find an event near you visit

If you are interested in making sure you are getting the most out of the available seniors concessions visit or call the Seniors Enquiry Line on 1300 135 500.

Civil and workplace surveillance laws to be examined

The Palaszczuk Government is set to examine if there are threats to the privacy of Queenslanders from new tracking and surveillance technology.

The Queensland Law Reform Commission (QLRC) will look at the need to strengthen legislation around the use of surveillance devices and technologies in both the civil and workplace environments, said Member for Bancroft Chris Whiting.

“Each and every day we are seeing advances in smartphone technology, drone capability as well as tracking and data surveillance devices,” said Chris Whiting.

“So we want to see if we have the right balance between protecting the privacy of Queenslanders and the legitimate use of these technologies.

“The QLRC will examine ways to achieve this balance as technologies become increasingly sophisticated,” said Chris Whiting.

Chris Whiting said Queensland’s Invasion of Privacy Act 1971 included a number of offences relating to the use of listening devices to monitor, listen to or record a person’s private conversations.

However, the 1971 the Act did not regulate optical, tracking or data surveillance devices which have appeared in recent years.

“Often a person will need to rely on offences contained in the Criminal Code Act 1899 or common law actions such as trespass and nuisance to bring action against the misuse of surveillance devices and technologies,” he said.

“This is why we want the QLRC to see if these laws are adequate and see if we need specific legislation that covers all aspects beyond just listening devices.”

Chris Whiting said the use of surveillance devices in workplaces would also be considered by the QLRC.

“Employers use optical surveillance, data monitoring and tracking devices for a number of legitimate reasons, including to ensure employee health and safety, protect property from theft and damage, prevent fraud and monitor employee performance,” he said.

“We need to ask if this goes against an employee’s reasonable expectation of privacy,” Chris Whiting said.

The terms of reference can be found at and the QLRC will report back by 1 July 2019 (civil surveillance) and by 30 June 2020 (workplace surveillance).

Electricity rebate scheme extended for local households and small businesses

Householders could earn up to $225 and small businesses up to $360 over three years with the three-month extension of Ergon’s Easy Pay Rewards, said Chris Whiting MP

Eligible residents who sign up before the specified dates for e-billing, direct debit and bill smoothing from Ergon will receive a $75 per year rebate and small businesses will get $120 per year.

“This scheme has already been a great success and it shows the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to easing the cost of living on Queenslanders,” said Chris Whiting.

“I know the cost of living is an issue for families and impacts on small business’ capacity to create jobs.

“Our $2 billion Affordable Energy Plan will continue to tackle electricity costs.

“More than 53,000 Queensland households are reducing energy usage and bills with the energy efficient appliances we helped them buy with our rebates.

“Our means-tested, interest-free loans will help more Queensland families install solar systems.

“On top of all this every household is receiving $50 off their power bill this year, and next year, and our price cap guarantees that electricity prices will not rise above inflation for two years,” said Chris Whiting.

The extension of Ergon’s Easy Pay Rewards will allow customers who opt-in:

  • before 30 September 2018, to receive three annual payments;
  • after 30 September 2018, but before 1 April 2019, to receive two annual payments and
  • after 1 April 2019, but before 1 January 2020, to receive one annual payment.

“Electricity prices are falling in Queensland, unlike under the LNP when prices rose 43 per cent over three years,’’ said Chris Whiting.

“Because Queenslanders own their assets, we are able to maintain downward pressure,” he said.

Solar ACES Wanted to Light Up Solar Schools

Chris Whiting MP wants local solar business to tender for work under the $97 million Advancing Clean Energy Schools (ACES), Chris Whiting MP said.

Mr Whiting said that solar panels will start being installed on Queensland state schools over the summer holidays, and he is encouraging local businesses to submit their tender for this unique solar project.

“The Palaszczuk Government has committed over $97 million over the next three years to install solar panels, and other energy saving devices in our state schools,” said Chris Whiting.

“Every single state school in the Bancroft electorate has been selected, with the first stage to start in the summer holidays,” said Chris Whiting.

“The ACES program includes $40 million for new solar systems and $57 million to install other energy efficiency measures, such as LED lighting and timers on hot water systems.

“Queensland’s state schools are one of the largest energy users in Queensland as they spend more than $67 million a year on their energy bills.

“The ACES program will save schools money which they can redirect into learning outcomes for students, air-conditioning and other facilities,” Chris Whiting said.

The Government is calling for tenders to establish a Pre-Qualified Panel of lead contractors to implement the ACES program.

Companies who qualify will be announced during Term 4.

“We know this program will have flow-on effects for the local economy as the contractors we employ will have to maximise local employment opportunities,” said Chris Whiting.

Stage One schools will be named during Term 4, with stages two and three rolling out to remaining schools in 2019 and 2020.

Details of the Invitation to Offer (ITO) are available on the Qtenders website –

$2.16 Million to Skill Bancroft for Work

Chris Whiting MP, has today welcomed the news that Bancroft community groups will share in more than $2 million in funding to provide Skilling Queenslanders for Work programs.

The Skilling Queenslanders for Work initiative, which was axed under the Newman LNP Government, and reinstated by the Palaszczuk Government, provides funds for local community groups, in partnership with Registered Training Organisations, to train people and provide them with skills to help them enter the work force.

“The Skilling Queenslanders for Work programs, is one of the things I am most proud of delivering to our community.

“It is always great to hear about the many, many success stories coming out of local SQW programs.

“From the long term unemployed family of five who all secured work after completing the SQW training, to the young single mother, have all had their lives changed for the better through SQW.

“When I speak with the providers of the programs, they tell me that one of the best things that people get from SQW is not only the ability to look for and gain work, but also the confidence to do so.

“Since SQW was reinstated by the Palaszczuk Government more than 514 people have gotten a job through the program in Bancroft alone,” Mr Whiting said.

To June 2018 683 people have benefitted from one of 25 Skilling Queenslanders for Works programs in the Bancroft electorate.

The latest round of funding brings total SQW funds, since 2015 in the Bancroft Electorate to more than $7.16 million.

“The Deception Bay Community Youth Program will received more than $165 million in funding in this round to provide four programs, to assist 172 people.

“The Deception Bay Neighbourhood Centre, and Movement TwentyTwo will receive $282,300 and $224,100 to assist 90 and 75 people respectively,” Mr Whiting said.

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