North Lakes businesses can now get access to a new $2.3 million business fund to help them grow and create new jobs, Chris Whiting MP said today.
The Business Growth Fund will provide targeted assistance for businesses to purchase specialised equipment, or access professional advice, said Chris Whiting.
“I want small and medium sized businesses to have a look at applying to this program as they will be eligible to apply for grants of up to $50,000,” said Chris Whiting.
“I know that many North Lakes small businesses take risks when they expand and I want more small businesses to expand with the help of expert advice and support,” Mr Whiting said.
The Palaszczuk Government, has worked with business and industry to create over 152,400 new jobs in Queensland since the January 2015 election.
“I know that small businesses are the engine room of the diverse North Lakes and Queensland economy, and I am determined to help them invest to grow their business, jobs and our local economy.” Mr Whiting said.
Applications will open on 28 March 2018 and applicants will go through a 2 stage assessment process, including a Shark Tank-style pitch during which they’ll have to put their plans to a panel of business experts.
The Business Growth Fund is open to businesses with fewer than 50 employees and a minimum turnover of $500,000 can apply for the funding and must be able to make a contribution of between 25 per cent and 50 per cent.
Applications for the Business Growth Fund will open this month.
For more information visit: www.business.qld.gov.au/growthfund
Good Friday in the North Lakes and Deception Bay Area will be one to remember this year as the region will host both the Queen’s Baton Relay and the Redcliffe Festival of Sails, said Chris Whiting MP.
The Queens’s Baton Relay will be moving along Redcliffe Parade between 8.30 and 9am, followed by a community celebration at Suttons Beach, with the Easter Bunny himself dropping in for an appearance, finally the passing by of the Brisbane to Gladstone yachts from about 11.30am.
“It is something that should not be missed and I encourage locals to line the streets to cheer on our local baton bearers, and then watch the Brisbane to Gladstone yachts go by,” Chris Whiting said.
“Hosting the Queen’s Baton Relay will shine an international spotlight on the Moreton Bay Regional Council area and some of our greatest achievers as they carry the baton.
“Baton bearers have been selected from all walks of life from volunteers to well-known athletes,” Chris Whiting said.
Chris Whiting said the Queen’s Baton Relay celebrated the spirt of the games and would take a 100-day journey across the nation in the lead-up to the Games.
“The Baton will travel along the longest and most accessible route ever and it’s a great opportunity for all Queenslanders to get involved in the biggest event our state has ever hosted.”
The 2018 Commonwealth Games will be held from 4 to 15 April.
Details around the exact route being travelled by baton bearers are at gc2018.com/qbr
Chris Whiting MP wants our “great local schools” to nominate for the 2018 Showcase Awards for Excellence in Schools.
Chris Whiting said a local school would get a part of the $619,000 funding pool if successful in one of the 11 categories for the prestigious awards.
“The Showcase Awards are an annual celebration of all that is great about state schooling,” said Chris Whiting
“The new stand-alone Indigenous Education category allows us to highlight the positive steps our schools are taking to improve Indigenous education outcomes.
“I’m sure this year’s award entries will also highlight many of the creative ways schools and school communities are using digital and virtual learning techniques to enhance education outcomes.”
Chris Whiting urged all state schools to celebrate their achievements by nominating for an award.
“The awards celebrate excellent teaching practices from the earliest years through to senior level, recognising improvement plans and progress and encourage a culture of learning and sharing among our schools,” Chris said.
Nominations will close on 18 May 2018.
Regional award winners and commendations will be announced in June, state finalists in July and the state award winners will be announced at a gala dinner in Brisbane on World Teachers’ Day on 26 October 2018.
More information and submission guidelines are available at www.education.qld.gov.au/showcase
The new Energy Efficient Appliance Rebate scheme is now open for local residents to get money back when they purchase new energy efficient washing machines, fridges and air conditioners.
This $20 million scheme offers eligible households a rebate of $200 for a 4 star rated washing machine, $250 for a 4 star rated fridge, $300 for a 4 star rated air conditioner.
“This bill-busting rebate scheme from the Palaszczuk Government is now available to Queensland residents and will help lower the cost of living for Queensland families,” Chris Whiting said.
“I want to see this rebate taken up by as many eligible local families as possible.
“You can complete the application form online at: www.qld.gov.au/appliancerebate.
“If households do not have internet access, they can telephone the call centre on 13 43 87 and an officer will complete an application on their behalf.
“Households have 30 days from the date of purchase to submit their application in full.
“If you have purchased your appliance on or after 1 January 2018, prior to applications opening on 19 February 2018, you will need to apply by 20 March 2018 to get your rebate.
“The rebate is not means tested but I encourage everyone to check their eligibility at www.dews.qld.gov.au ,” said Chris Whiting.
Chris Whiting has been appointed Chair of the powerful State Development, Natural Resources and Agricultural Industry Development Committee.
The Committee is charged with overseeing legislation relating to mining, agriculture, energy, manufacturing and water.
“It is a great honour to be appointed chair of the State Development, Natural Resources and Agricultural Industry Development Committee,”
“The work that the Committee undertakes is vital to the Palaszczuk Government’s plans for growing jobs and growing the Queensland economy,”
“Working with my Committee colleagues and Ministers Cameron Dick, Anthony Lynham and Mark Furner I know that we will all work hard to achieve for Queenslanders,” Mr Whiting said.
Locally, we have a strong industrial and manufacturing base, which employs people from across the region, and exports right around the world.
The Committee also oversees the Infrastructure and Planning portfolios, which are important in the fast growing Moreton Bay Region.
“I encourage local businesses to ensure that they are aware of any funding opportunities that they might be eligible for,” Mr Whiting said.
More information about available Grants can be found at: https://www.grants.services.qld.gov.au
“The Moreton Bay region is well represented in the Palaszczuk Government with Yvette D’Ath, Steven Miles, Mark Ryan and Mark Furner all serving in Cabinet, and Shane King and myself serving as Committee Chairs,” finished Mr Whiting.
The latest round of the Palaszczuk Government’s successful Skilling Queenslanders for Work (SQW) initiative is open said Chris Whiting MP.
SQW has been a hugely successful program getting local job seekers into work and training.
“Skilling Queenslanders for Work is producing fantastic results locally with hundreds of people having found work after completing an SQW program,” Mr Whiting said
“More than 13,000 Queenslanders have got into work because of the Palaszczuk Government’s Skilling Queenslanders for Work program,”
“I encourage any interested organisations to head to the Skilling Queenslanders for Work portal at www.training.qld.gov.au to find out how you can be a part of this outstanding initiative,” Mr Whiting said.
Community-based, not-for-profit organisations can apply online as well as local councils, and some Parents and Citizens associations. Eligible organisations have until 5pm on Thursday 12 April to develop and submit their Skilling Queenslanders for Work project applications.
Minister for Training and Skill, Shannon Fentiman said that “investment in programs like Skilling Queenslanders for Work is a great example of the Palaszczuk Government’s focus on jobs, with more than 13,000 Queenslanders getting into work because of the program”.
Skilling Queenslanders for Work funds skills development, training and job opportunities for unemployed, disengaged or disadvantaged Queenslanders through a suite of targeted skills and training programs.
For further information visit www.training.qld.gov.au/sqw or call 1300 369 935.
North Lakes shoppers and retail workers need to start preparing for the ban on single-use lightweight plastic shopping bags starting on 1 July 2018, Chris Whiting MP said.
Chris Whiting said the ban on supply of these bags will mean a change in our shopping habits, but believes Queenslanders want to help reduce the amount of plastic getting into the ocean and our waterways.
“North Lakes has the most dynamic and interesting shopping experience in SEQ, and our community needs to the ready for this big change coming in on July 1,” said Chris Whiting.
“We need to take action to protect our unique environment from nearly one billion single-use lightweight plastic shopping bags used in Queensland each year.
“While the majority of these bags end up in landfill, around 16 million lightweight plastic shopping bags enter the environment in Queensland each year.
“Sea turtles and sea birds can ingest these bags or become entangled in them.
“Littered plastic bags are unsightly, can clog up infrastructure, and are difficult and costly to clean up,” said Chris Whiting.
In February 2017, a consultation paper seeking feedback from the public on a ban on the supply of lightweight plastic shopping bags attracted more than 26,000 submissions and an overwhelming 96% supported the introduction of a ban on the supply of lightweight plastic shopping bags.
North Lakes shop owners and workers need to know the plastic bag ban will apply to all retailers in Queensland.
From 1 July 2018, Plastic shopping bags less than 35 microns in thickness (a single-use or lightweight plastic shopping bag) will no longer be able to be sold or given to the customer.
This includes compostable, degradable and biodegradable plastic shopping bags, as these can still harm wildlife if littered.
Retailers may choose to provide and charge for alternative bags including reusable heavy duty plastic bags, woven polypropylene “green bags,” paper or other bags. Shoppers can also bring their own bag or trolley.
Types of bags which will not be banned include:
• barrier bags for unpackaged perishable food such as fruit, vegetables, meat and fish.
• bin liners and garbage bags
• ‘dog park’ bags provided by Councils at dog parks and beaches
• paper bags or cardboard bags
• heavier weight single-use department store plastic bags.
“I know North Lakes shoppers are already changing their shopping habits in preparation for the single use plastic bag ban,” said Chris Whiting.
“Many are already taking reusable bags shopping instead of relying on the single-use bags provided in-store.
“I want to encourage shoppers to keep some reusable bags in your car for those unexpected trips to the shops,” said Chris Whiting.
Local organisations are being encouraged to apply to share in more than $1.8 million in funding available over the next year to commemorate the Anzac Centenary, Chris Whiting said.
Mr Whiting said the Queensland Government was committed to preserving the Anzac legacy for future generations, with groups in the area able to apply for grants of up to $80,000 to commemorate the role played by Queenslanders in the First World War.
“The Queensland Government is supporting a range of initiatives to commemorate the Anzac Centenary, including the Spirit of Service and Lasting Legacies grant programs,” Chris Whiting said.
“These grant programs are open to local groups and organisations, with RSL’s, parents and friends associations, sporting clubs and not for profits groups all welcome to apply.
“It’s important to honour the legacy of our Anzacs and these grants help our local communities to keep the memory of the brave men and women who served in the First World War alive,” he said.
The Spirit of Service grants program provides funding for projects up to $20,000, while the Lasting Legacies grants program provides funding between $20,001 and $80 000.
Chris whiting said there were numerous ways to honour the service and sacrifice of Queenslanders through these grant programs, from traditional approaches to new and engaging projects.
“Previous grants have been awarded for the display of military memorabilia, the development of phone apps, books, guided tours and even plays,” he said.
“With the latest rounds of the Spirit of Service and Lasting Legacies grant programs now open, I encourage local groups and organisations to apply.”
The current round of Lasting Legacies grants program closes 20 August 2017, and the current round of Spirit of Service applications will close on 15 October 2017.
For more information or to start an application, visit www.qld.gov.au/anzac100 or call 3003 9170.
Chris Whiting MP, Member for Murrumba says local families should get ready to take advantage of extra vouchers made available by the Palaszczuk government to help young people join sports or recreation clubs.
Mr Whiting said Treasurer and Minister for Sport, Curtis Pitt, had made an extra $750,000 available to help more than 5,000 Queensland children kick-start their involvement in organised sport through Round 9 of the popular Get Started vouchers program.
“The program provides vouchers that can be used to help meet the cost of club membership for young people interested in sporting activities,” Mr Whiting said.
“The vouchers are designed for families who might otherwise not be able to afford the cost of a sports or recreational club fees.
“High demand for the $150 vouchers in the current Round 9 of the Get Started program led to the initial allocation of $4.2 million worth of vouchers being exhausted very soon after the online applications opened last week.
“More than 800 vouchers were issued to families in the Murrumba electorate but I know there is demand for more.
“So it is good news that Curtis Pitt has allocated an additional $750,000 in vouchers that will be available online from 9.15 am on Thursday.
“The extra funds should help as many as 5,000 more children across Queensland to get involved in their favourite sport.
“I urge anyone who wants a voucher to act quickly on Thursday morning by visiting www.npsr.qld.gov.au/getinthegame.
“The vouchers are issued on a ‘first come, first served’ basis, and demand is always high, so you need to be quick,” Mr Whiting said.
Design work is underway on $5.75 million worth of upgrades and improvements to Anzac Avenue in Rothwell and Kippa-Ring.
Yvette D’Ath MP, State Member for Redcliffe and Chris Whiting MP, State Member for Murrumba have welcomed the news of the upgrade which will see dedicated cycle lanes added to this section of Anzac Avenue.
“The works will include the asphalt resurfacing of all six lanes of Anzac Ave between Gynther Rd and Klinger Rd,” said Ms D’Ath
“Design work on this project is currently underway. Consultation with stakeholders will commence once these plans are finalised.” Ms D’Ath said.
“I welcome the addition of almost 3km of cycle lanes to the network in the Moreton Bay region. These new lanes, and the Shared Pathway on the Moreton Bay Rail Link will provide choice for local and visiting cyclists,” Mr Whiting said
“As a cyclist myself I am pleased to see these much anticipated lanes added to Anzac Avenue, providing another active transport option for people across the region to get out and active.”
“This is the first upgrade of the road surface on Anzac Ave in almost a decade, and is part of the Palaszczuk Government’s commitment to improving Queensland’s infrastructure.” Mr Whiting said.
Ms D’Ath and Mr Whiting said that they look forward to the upgrade works commencing in early 2017.