Business-Friendly Budget by New Lord Mayor
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) welcomes Brisbane’s Lord Mayor, Adrian Schrinner’s first budget with its commitment to back local businesses with new support services as well as lower fees and charges aimed at rejuvenating suburban retail precincts.
CCIQ Head of Media, Dan Petrie notes that the Lord Mayor’s $3.15 billion budget coalesces around thematics on a cleaner and greener business-friendly environment whilst acknowledging that small businesses form the backbone of Brisbane’s economy.
“It’s reassuring that the newly minted mayor has got off on a fresh foot to support Brisbane’s 124,000 strong small to medium sized business community, introducing a $2 million reduction in fees and charges with a particular focus on start-ups including $284,000 for two new liaison support officers to foster new opportunities for social enterprises, $1.7 million on a business hotline, as well as a $50,000 boost to support local trader associations to develop precinct promotion plans.
“However, it is disappointing that commercial rates rose by 3.5% on average, which is a full percentage point greater than general rate rises of 2.5% on average.
“Congestion-busting transport infrastructure investments, including the addition of six new ferries to the fleet replacing old stock and five new foot bridges across the Brisbane River aimed to ease transport congestion around the city are welcome announcements at a time of strong population growth.
“The council’s signature Brisbane Metro project is critical in improving the liveability of the city as well as increasing the inner city’s appeal for investors and tourists.
CCIQ remains supportive of the council infrastructure investment program noting the accompanying increase in debt to fund these projects is appropriate and manageable at this time.