Grant for building regional

Amy Agnew said building a hew home was not an option, despite the State Government’s latest offer of an extra $4000 for first home builders.
Amy Agnew said building a hew home was not an option, despite the State Government’s latest offer of an extra $4000 for first home builders. Craig Warhurst

A NEW incentive for first home owners to build in regional areas may not be as popular as Premier Anna Bligh believes.

Ms Bligh is topping up the first home owner’s grant by $4000 for first home owners who build a new home in regional areas like Gympie.

But first home owner Amy Agnew said although the extra money would have been nice, for her first home building just was not an option.

“I worked it out and it was going to cost too much,” she said.

Ms Agnew, 19, was lucky to get in before the Federal Government reduced the First Home Owners Grant boost.

She lived in the home for six months before turning it into an investment property.

Ms Bligh said the grants would boost construction jobs in Queensland’s regional areas and take population growth pressure off South East Queensland.

The new grant is a $4000 boost to the State Government’s existing $7000 First Home Owners Grant and follows on from the Queensland Growth Management Summit in March.

“If we want to effectively manage Queensland’s growth it is vital that we actively encourage people to settle outside SEQ,” Ms Bligh said.

“Today we are saying that, for the first time, the Queensland Government is providing a grant to encourage people to move to the regions and to stay in the regions.

“By boosting the First Home Owners Grant we show we are committed to finding new ways to manage the huge population growth SEQ has experienced in recent years.

“With a city the size of Mackay moving to the South East each year we simply must look at ways to encourage growth into the other regions to take the pressure off SEQ.

“I believe this grant will be part of enticing first home owners to look outside SEQ and see the wonderful opportunities that exist in the other parts of the state.”

The Premier said the government will also develop a population and economic activity led Queensland Regionalisation Strategy.

A draft of the Queensland Regionalisation Strategy will be developed over the next 18 months for public release with the final strategy due to be completed in 2011.

“As well as consulting in Brisbane our government has been listening to regional Queenslanders on their ideas and feedback about regionalisation via eight regionalisation forums,” Ms Bligh said.

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