CASH FOR CARTING: Premier commits to funds for crisis
A PERFECT storm of devastation on the Granite Belt has been eased somewhat with a state government commitment.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk was in Stanthorpe this afternoon to raise the mood and announce her government will cover water costs into the future.
Emergency funds will cover $2.4 million worth of water infrastructure to be built at Storm King Dam, as well as an estimated $800,000 per month to cart 1.6 million litres of water in every single day.
"I wanted to come here to hear of the extra efforts that took place over the last few days because of the fires,” Premier Palaszczuk said.
"It has been a huge effort. Its been community, its been council led and all the state agencies working together.
"I'm so proud of the efforts that have gone in here.
"This community has been through a lot and I don't think this community has to be worrying about where their drinking water is going to come from.
"A month ago the mayor raised with me a really important issue and that was the issue of access to drinking water as the town faces a massive shortage.
"I think we're looking at around December and this community could run out of water.
"I don't want this community to be under any more stress.”
Until it rains, the government are locked in to delivering water.
"Around 34 truckloads of water per day will be carted from Connolly Dam to Storm King Dam, while it's needed.
"We've made provisions until 2021 which will get the community through this difficult period.
"If the drought lifts and the wet season delivers enough water, then the carting will no longer be needed.
"With bushfires following the prolonged drought, Stanthorpe will not be left to battle through this alone.”
Southern Downs mayor Tracy Dobie thanked the government for their support, while also illuminating people on what water had been used to fight the fires.
Cr Dobie said most water had come from Quart Pot Creek, with very little drawn from Storm King Dam.