Queensland Budget

Support for business and workers

Big Plans for Small Business Strategy 2021-23 is designed to build a small business sector that helps drive economic recovery and employment across Queensland.

The new strategy outlines how $140 million worth of support for the sector will be delivered over two years and puts a strong focus on giving small business operators, jobseekers and workers the right skills to meet the workforce needs of the sector.

To support small business, actions from the strategy are already underway:

The Back to Work program has a commitment of up to $140 million over four years with an added focus to provide intensive support to employers and disadvantaged jobseekers in addition to targeted support payments.

The new arrangements will take effect on 1 July 2021. Employers may still make an application under the current Back to Work program if they employed their eligible employee up to and including 30 June 2021.

The Skilling Queenslanders for Work program will become permanent with the Queensland Government announcing $320 million over four years, with $80 million each year ongoing. The initiative will assist up to 15,000 disadvantaged Queenslanders each year to gain skills, qualifications and experience to enter and stay in the workforce. For further information, including program guidelines, eligibility criteria and the application portal visit www.qld.gov.au/skillingqueenslanders or call 1300 369 935.

The next funding round opened 23 June 2021 and close 5pm Thursday 19 August 2021.


Two key roads in the Keppel electorate will be significantly boosted in the State Government Budget with a total spend of $12 million and a focus on road safety. The Rockhampton – Emu Park Road would receive $2 million for upgrades in the next financial year, including overtaking lanes and other priority safety and capacity improvements which were a pre-election promise.

There will also be $10 million in the 21-22 financial year towards the $80 million upgrade the Rockhampton – Yeppoon Road, expanding the second part of the road to four lanes. The Rockhampton – Yeppoon Road is also receiving $4.4m for strengthening pavement.

Rosslyn Bay Boat Harbour’s boating facilities are being reconfigured at a cost of $250,000.

$22.74 million to continue the Rockhampton Northern Access Upgrade, underway and due to be completed in the second half of this year.

Other major roadworks funded in the Queensland Budget include:

  • Maintenance and report of safety treatments, various locations         $620,000
  • Safety and critical maintenance program, planning      $150,000
  • Sign spearing mitigation, various locations, replace signs $252,526
  • Western Yeppoon – Emu Park Road, Taranganba Road to Yeppoon Road, upgrade cycling facilities $1,378,397
  • Taranganba Road (Stage 2), Tanby Road to Carige Boulevard, design shared path $7,500
  • Taranganba Road and Carige Boulevard, install signalised intersection $648,046
  • Werribee Road, Werribee Creek, replace bridge $119,761
  • Bruigom Street, St Anthony’s Catholic Primary School, construct footpath $28,000
  • Doonside Road, Doonside Bridge (Canal Creek), replace bridge $390,856
  • Rockhampton Ring Road, plan, preserve and construct $35,000,000
  • Bruce Highway (Rockhampton – St Lawrence), various locations (Rockhampton), improve intersections $5,290,340

Coastal projects

Tourism in Keppel and surrounds has been given a boost in the Budget, with a $4,373,000 investment as part of a $30,000,000 commitment towards delivering enabling infrastructure to stimulate tourism development on Great Keppel Island and throughout the region.

The Causeway Lake revitilisation has also been allocated $120,000 State Budget investment to undertake a study and prepare a business case for the proposed dredging, as part of a $300,000 total spend.

The Mill Gallery in Yeppoon receives a further $125,000 of a total spend of $250,000 to deliver an approximate 200-square metre extension to art gallery that will accommodate community fine-art collectives.

Other Budget allocations for services and infrastructure, include:

  • $1,967,350 of $2,810,500 to transition Yeppoon Sewage Treatment Plant’s power consumption to a renewable solar powered energy source.
  • $1,705,000.00 out of a $3,500,000.00 2021-24 Works for Queensland Program commitment over three financial years to support local governments to undertake job-creating maintenance and minor infrastructure works.
  • $1,032,000.00 out of a $2,580,000.00 2020-21 COVID Works for Queensland Program commitment over one financial year to support the delivery of job creating new infrastructure, maintenance or minor works as part of the Queensland Government’s Economic Recovery Strategy.
  • $1,705,000.00 out of a $3,410,000.00 2019-21 Works for Queensland Program commitment over two financial years to support local governments to undertake job-creating maintenance and minor infrastructure works.
  • $200,000 will be spent in the 21-22 financial year as part of a $796,398 commitment towards a dinosaur themed tourist attraction at Cooberrie Park Wildlife Sanctuary.

CQUniversity TAFE

$8,400,000 to spend on equipping TAFE with investment in the Training Centre of Excellence at CQUniversity’s North Rockhampton campus of great benefit for local students and workers to study at one of the nation’s highest ranked universities.

The University will also benefit from a $500,000 investment by the government to explore ways to improve partnerships, innovative ways to deliver grant programs.


The health of Central Queenslanders has been given top priority in the State Budget with more than $691 million to be invested in more frontline staff and a range of key projects.

The Budget will deliver $5.7 million in 2021-22, out of a $16.3 million total spend, for the new 4-bed residential alcohol and other drug rehabilitation and treatment facility in Rockhampton which is due to open later this year.

The Rockhampton Hospital will also benefit from $6.2 million to improve facilities, including an expansion of the Mental Health Ward and the Cardiac Hybrid Theatre, as part of a $31.1 million total spend.

Other Budget highlights for CQ Health included:

  • $7 million in growth funding to deliver additional services to meet the community’s needs
  • $500,000 earmarked for the Transfer Initiative Nurse model of care at Rockhampton Hospital to support ambulances getting back on the road faster
  • $1.9 million committed towards the First Nation people’s health including the Making Tracks Investment Strategy and the First Nations Health Equity Strategy.

Programs that will benefit small businesses

  • $29.4 million over four years ($9.1 million in 2021-22) for the Electricity Tariff Adjustment Scheme, targeting support towards regional business electricity connections due to phasing out of obsolete electricity tariffs
  • $7 million to extend live music venue support to support the sustainability of Queensland’s live music industry
  • $71 million to support the Queensland screen industry, including $53 million to continue the Screen Queensland Production Attraction Strategy, $10 million for the Post, Digital and Visual Effects incentive, $4 million for the Screen Finance Program, and $4 million for a North Queensland Regional Program
  • Up to $12 million over three years for the Mobile Black Spot Program, to improve coverage for businesses and communities across the state
  • $20.6 million over five years ($5.3 million in 2021-22) for Rural Economic Development and Rural Agricultural Development Grants
  • $1.9 million to continue the Tourism Business Financial Counselling Service which was launched in March this year
  • $1.6 million in grants to small and medium sized businesses to reach new markets or use eCommerce platforms

Reports and media releases

Chamber of Commerce Queensland, Queensland Budget: What it means for small business, including –

• Key announcements and funding for businesses
• Economic review of key announcements
• High-level breakdown of the fiscal position
• Budget Scorecard (6/10), evaluated using the benefit to Queensland business.

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