LNP Leader Campbell Newman and LNP Whitsunday candidate Jason Costigan at Airlie Beach.
LNP Leader Campbell Newman and LNP Whitsunday candidate Jason Costigan at Airlie Beach. Courtney Garnham

More council power under Can-Do

LNP leader Campbell Newman says red tape and bureaucracy is ruling Queensland councils and has vowed to give more decision-making powers to local government, if elected.

Mr Newman yesterday said the State Government had taken away too much power from local government and the LNP, if triumphant at the next election, would give it back.

"This State Government has tied councils up in red tape and bureaucracy," Mr Newman told the Daily Mercury.

"We are going to empower local government in a way this State Government doesn't. We need people like (Mackay Mayor) Col Meng and your council able to do greater things."

The former Brisbane Lord Mayor said an LNP State Government would allow councils to take a lead role on a range of issues pertinent to their communities, including town planning and the assessment of development projects.

Mr Newman also said local government would play a greater role in the development of regional plans after expressing concerns about the State Government's handling of the draft Mackay-Isaac-Whitsunday Regional Plan.

He said the State Government had become increasingly "arrogant" and "distant" when it came to regional plans and the UDIA Mackay-Whitsunday branch had every right to attack the region's draft plan.

"The UDIA is concerned it will put huge pressure on affordability of land, which is what happened in South East Queensland," he said.

"I think the UDIA has every right to express such a concern. If you don't make sure you project your population increase properly and the amount of land you're going to need you get these affordability problems."

Mr Newman called on the State Government to demonstrate there was enough land supply in Mackay to last 15 years.

"If it (regional plan) is not done properly it can restrict land supply," he said.


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