Qld council numbers to be halved; bush decimated

27th July 2007The number of Queensland councils will be slashed by more than half – from 157 to just 72 – following a review into the state’s local government boundaries announced today.

While there will be no change to Brisbane City Council, many other councils face significant amalgamations.

The speculation that the massive shires of far western Queensland would be left untouched has proved true, but in the central west many shires have been merged to create councils with boundaries bigger than most countries.

Changes include:

* Aramac to join Barcaldine and Jericho to be amalgamated;

* Emerald, Peak Downs and Bauhinia;

* Atherton to merge with Eacham, Herberton, and Mareeba;

* Roma to gain Bungil, Bendemere, Waroo and Booringa shires;

* Biggenden to merge with Gaynday, Mundubbera, Eidsvold, Perry and Monto;

* Belyando to include parts of Broadsound and Nebo;

* Blackall will amalgamate with Tambo;

* Ipswich – to lose Harrisville and Peak Crossing;

* Gatton – combined with Laidley;

* Boonah – combined with Beaudesert;

* Esk – combined with Kilcoy under the name Esk;

* Toowoomba – combined with Crows Nest, Jondaryan, Cambooya and other councils under the name Toowoomba;

* Logan – picks up part of Beaudesert and Gold Coast;

* Pine Rivers – combined with Caboolture and Redcliffe;

* Maryborough – combined with Hervey Bay, Tiaro, Woocoo under the name Maryborough;

* Bundaberg – combined with Burnett, Isis, Kolan under the name Bundaberg;

* Gladstone – combined with Calliope under the name Gladstone;

* Rockhampton – combined with Mt Morgan, Fitzroy under the name Rockhampton;

* Mackay – combined with Sarina, Broadsound, Mirani, Nebo under the name Mackay;

* Bowen – combined with Whitsunday;

* Townsville – combined with Thuringowa under the name Townsville; and

* Cairns – combined with Atherton, Eacham, Johnstone under the name Cairns.

* To see the full report from the Local Government Reform Commission, visit the State Government’s Stronger Councils website.

SOURCE: The Brisbane Times, a Fairfax Media website.