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Maranoa–BalonneRegional Planplanning for a stronger, more liveableand sustainable communitySeptember 2009

Maranoa–Balonne Regional PlanPrepared by:The Honourable Stirling Hinchliffe MP,Minister for Infrastructure and Planning inaccordance with the Integrated Planning Act(IPA) 1997, Division 4, Section 2.5A.With assistance from:Department of Infrastructure and PlanningIn consultation with:Maranoa–Balonne Regional CoordinationCommitteePublished by:Disclaimer: This document is produced toconvey general information. While everycare has been taken in preparing thisdocument, the State of Queensland acceptsno responsibility for decisions or actionstaken as a result of any data, information,statement or advice, express or implied,contained within. The contents of thisdocument were correct to the best of ourknowledge at the time of publishing.Any reference to legislation containedwithin is not an interpretation of the law.It is to be used as a guide only.The information contained within doesnot take into consideration any referenceto individual circumstances or situations.Where appropriate independent legaladvice should be sought.Release notesThe Department of Infrastructure andPlanning brings together planning,local government and infrastructureresponsibilities into one departmentenabling government to deliver integratedsolutions, face the state’s populationand economic challenges and secure asustainable future for Queensland. The State of Queensland (Department ofInfrastructure and Planning) 2009.Published by the Queensland Government,September 2009, 100 George Street,Brisbane Qld 4000.The Queensland Government supports andencourages the dissemination and exchangeof information. However, copyright protectsthis document. The State of Queenslandhas no objection to this material beingreproduced, made available online orelectronically but only if it is recognised asthe owner of the copyright and this materialremains unaltered. Copyright inquiries aboutthis publication should be directed to theCrown Copyright Administrator via email,[email protected] or in writing toPO Box 15168, City East, Queensland 4002.ISBN: 978-0-9804831-8-5M-B RPS 0056 .05 PuThe Maranoa-Balonne Regional Plan isreleased by the Minister for Infrastructureand Planning in accordance with theIntegrated Planning Act 1997, section2.5A.15. It is a statutory instrument underthe Statutory Instruments Act 1992.The regional plan applies to the MaranoaBalonne regional local government areas,as defined under IPA, section 2.5A.2.It replaces the Draft Maranoa and DistrictsRegional Plan (the draft plan) releasedby the regional planning Minister on 5August 2008. The draft plan was subject tocommunity consultation and comment upto 30 November 2008. A consultation report,which summarised the issues raisedduring the consultation period was releasedon 22 September 2009. It is available atwww.dip.qld.gov.au/maranoa-balonne orby calling 1300 724 051.The regional plan has been prepared ingood faith, taking into account all publicsubmissions, to provide a framework for themanagement and development of the regionfor more than 20 years.The regional plan represents an agreedQueensland Government position on thefuture of the Maranoa-Balonne region.Any plans, policies and codes beingprepared or amended by state agenciesor local government must reflect and alignwith the regional plan.The regional plan does not commit or pertainto commit any government, industry orcommunity organisation to implement, fundor otherwise resource specific activities orprograms.All maps are intended to represent generalconcepts for the purpose of broad-scaleregional planning. These maps do not and arenot intended to identify or give attributes orrights, including land use and developmentrights, to specific land parcels. Boundariesand locations are indicative only and may besubject to further refinement. The Departmentof Infrastructure and Planning, does notguarantee or make any representationsas to the accuracy or completeness of theinformation shown on these maps, nor doesit accept any responsibility or liability for anyloss or damage arising from its use.For more information on the regional plancontact:Department of Infrastructure and Planningpost PO Box 979 Bundaberg Qld 4670visit Level 1, 7 Takalvan StreetBundaberg Qldtel1300 724 051fax 61 7 4151 9745email [email protected] www.dip.qld.gov.au/maranoa-balonneCopies of the regional plan are available:online www.dip.qld.gov.au/maranoa-balonnefor viewing at most council chambers, librariesand customer service centres withinthe local government areas covered by theregional planfor free on CD-ROM or in hard copy bycontacting Department of Infrastructure andPlanning offices in Bundaberg and Brisbaneby phoning 1300 724 051by emailing [email protected] of Infrastructure and Planningoffices: Level 1, 7 Takalvan Street Bundaberg Qld Shop front, 63 George Street Brisbane QldThe Queensland Government is committedto providing accessible services toQueenslanders from all culturally andlinguistically diverse backgrounds. If youhave difficulty understanding this documentand need an interpreter, please call theTranslating and Interpreting Service(TIS National) on 131 450 and ask them totelephone the Queensland Department ofInfrastructure and Planning on 07 3227 8548.

Maranoa–BalonneRegional Planplanning for a stronger, more liveableand sustainable communityRegional visionWe will have safe, healthy communities with thriving, sustainable industries.Guided by the lessons of our history, we will respect our past, nurture our diverselandscapes and create a wealth of opportunity for future generations.A welcoming and growing region for all.

Maranoa–Balonne Regional Plan

2Maranoa–Balonne Regional PlanContentsPART A—Introduction.44. Urban development .32Background and purpose .44.1 Regional activity centres network.32Statutory regional plans .64.2 Housing and accommodation .32Working with other plans and strategies .64.3 Enhancing and promoting lifestyle and quality of life .33Preparation .74.4 Disaster management .35Application, implementation and review .75. Economic development .36Structure of the regional plan .75.1 Primary production—prosperity .37Maps .85.2 Energy and mineral resource development .39PART B—Regional vision .95.3 Regional business encouragement, opportunitiesand investment . 41PART C—Strategic directions .10Traditional strengths. 10Emerging opportunities . 10Lifestyle .11PART D—REGIONAL ACTIVITY CENTRES NETWORK .12Major regional activity centre. 13Major rural activity centres . 13District rural activity centres . 14Community activity centres . 14Other community hubs . 14PART E—Regional policies and strategies .15Underlying principles . 151. Natural environment .171.1 Protecting biodiversity and ecological processes . 172. Natural resource management .192.1 Water—access and sustainable use .202.2 Primary production—sustainability . 212.3 Pest management .222.4 Partnerships and knowledge .233. Strong communities .243.1 Changing demographics .253.2 Cultural values .263.3 Promoting health and wellbeing.273.4 Education and learning .293.5 Community organisations .293.6 Regional governance .305.4 Training, skills formation and staff retention .425.5 Tourism industry investment and development .426. Infrastructure .446.1 Delivering regional infrastructure.456.2 Transport networks .46PART F—Implementation, monitoring and review.48Plan making.48Implementation.48Roles and responsibilities .49Monitoring and reporting .49Review process .49Community involvement in implementation .49Appendix 1.50Mapping methodology for areas of ecological significance .50Appendix 2 .51Maps . 51Bibliography .58Glossary .59Acknowledgements .61

3List of tables and figuresTable 1.Population of centres—estimatedresident populations . 12Table 2. Specific climate change projections forMaranoa–Balonne. 16Table 3. Gross value ( millions) of agriculturalproduction . 36Table 4. Coal seam gas and pipeline projects—Maranoa–Balonne. 39Table 5. Key elements of the region’s hardinfrastructure (see maps 4 and 5) . 45Figure 1. Relationship between regional plan and otherplans and strategies . 6Figure 2. Regional plan flowchart . 8Figure 3. Estimated resident population. 24Figure 4. Maranoa population projections . 24Figure 5. The adaptive management planning process. 48

4Maranoa–Balonne Regional PlanPART A—IntroductionBackground andpurposeMaranoa–Balonne is located in southernQueensland, taking in rich cropping andgrazing lands and significant reservesof coal seam gas, conventional gasand petroleum. The region includes asignificant part of the Queensland MurrayDarling Basin, including the catchmentsof the Maranoa and Balonne-Culgoariver systems. The region’s population isapproximately 18 0001. Modest growthis anticipated over the next 20 years,largely arising from developments in theenergy sector.The region comprises the localgovernments of Maranoa RegionalCouncil and Balonne Shire Council.Preparation of the Draft Maranoa andDistricts Regional Plan was based on theformer local government areas of Balonne,Bendemere, Booringa, Bungil, Murilla,Roma, Tara and Warroo. The Maranoaand Districts region was designatedfor regional planning purposes underprovisions of the Integrated PlanningRegulation 1998 in September 2007.The region corresponded to the areaencompassed by these former shires.At the time of local governmentamalgamation in 2008, the Murilla andTara Shires were incorporated into theWestern Downs Regional Council. After itsformation, the Western Downs Regional1Council did not engage in preparationof the draft regional plan. As regionalplanning for Maranoa and Districtsinvolved only two of the six shiresamalgamated to form the Western DownsRegional Council, the Planning Ministerresolved to use the plan’s consultationphase to seek advice from the communityabout the preferred planning boundary forthe region.Submissions to the draft regionalplan strongly favoured the regionencompassing only Maranoa RegionalCouncil and Balonne Shire. Further, it wasrecommended that the region be renamedthe Maranoa–Balonne region.Accordingly, the plan has been finalisedto incorporate only the Maranoa RegionalCouncil and Balonne Shire Council.The former Murilla and Tara Shire Councilsare no longer included.An amendment to the Integrated PlanningRegulation 1998, in May 2009, redefinedthe designated region—changing theboundary and name. The plan nowreflects these changes.As part of resolving planning boundaries,before undertaking regional planningto encompass all of the Darling Downs,the state government will review theappropriateness of the Maranoa–Balonneboundary. The Maranoa–Balonne RegionalPlan is now final, but may be subject toearly review in the light of future regionalplanning boundary decisions.Planning Information and Forecasting Unit (PIFU), Department of Infrastructure and Planning (December 2008)The regional plan applies to the westernsection of the Surat Basin, approximatelyhalf its area. There is currently noregional plan for the Darling Downs, apartfrom the Toowoomba Statistical Division,which is incorporated into the South EastQueensland Regional Plan. Nor is therea regional plan to fully encompass theSurat Basin. Pre-planning studies beingundertaken for the Surat Basin will informfuture regional planning for the basinand the broader Darling Downs region,including the former Murilla and Tarashire sections of Western Downs RegionalCouncil.People who live and work in theMaranoa–Balonne region are faced with anumber of opportunities and challengesover the next 20 years. These include: managing growth associated with thedevelopment of energy resources in theSurat Basin maintaining profitability of enterprisesreliant on transport services and facingfluctuating commodity prices addressing irregular climatic andweather conditions providing opportunities for youngpeople who have traditionally migratedto urban areas attracting and retaining skilled staff accessing and providing essentialservices in smaller centres.

Part A—Introduction5Maranoa-Balonne locality mapDisclaimer: The information on this map should be treated as indicative only and subject to ongoing refinement. Based on or contains data provided by the State of Queensland (Department of Environment andResource Management) 2008. In consideration of the state permitting use of this data you acknowledge and agree that the state gives no warranty in relation to the data (including accuracy, reliability, completeness,currency or suitability) and accepts no liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for any loss, damage or costs (including consequential damage) relating to any use of the data. Data must not be usedfor direct marketing or be used in breach of the privacy laws. Data source: Department of Environment and Resource Management and Department of Infrastructure and Planning.

6Future challenges for local communitiesmay also include population reductionsin smaller centres, water shortagesassociated with shifting climate patternsand the effects of significant energydevelopments.In response to these challenges affectingrural Queenslanders, the QueenslandGovernment’s Blueprint for the Bush2initiative and the Rural EconomicDevelopment and Infrastructure Planwere developed to lay the foundationsfor the future sustainability, liveabilityand prosperity of these communities.The regional plan will be an essentialmechanism for managing changeand shaping the prospects of ruralcommunities by: addressing key economic, social andenvironmental issues prioritising infrastructure and serviceneeds maximising benefits and managing theimpacts of major projects driving innovation and productivity mobilising the public, private andcommunity sectorsMaranoa–Balonne Regional PlanRecent amendments to the IntegratedPlanning Act 1997 (IPA) allow new oramended regional plans to take statutoryeffect. Under a statutory regional plan,all subject development3 and land usein the region will need to comply withthe regional plan. The responsible localgovernment authority must amend itsplanning scheme to reflect the regionalplan, within 90 business days of theregional plan’s gazettal. The regional planprevails where there is inconsistencybetween it and a local governmentplanning scheme within the region.The plan also recognises localgovernments in the region have planningschemes prepared under the IPA andmany of the strategies that can beincorporated into planning schemes mayalready be evident.The regional plan does not includeregulatory provisions in relation to landWorking with otherplans and strategiesThe regional plan sets out desiredregional outcomes, which identifyaspirations for ecological sustainabilityfor the region. These desired regionaloutcomes cannot, however, be achievedthrough the policies and strategies inthis plan alone. Implementation of thestrategies and actions of other plans iscritical to achieving the region’s vision.Figure 1 depicts the relationship betweenthe regional plan and other plans andstrategies.The regional plan is not an economic,environmental or social plan, and itdoes not attempt to take the placeof conservation or tourism plans orstrategies. However, the plan doesFigure 1. Relationship between this plan and other regional plans and strategies aligning efforts across agencies and alllevels of government.The regional plan, whilst meeting someof the government’s Blueprint for theBush commitments, is also part of awider process—ensuring that a consistentand contemporary regional planningframework is operating across all ofQueensland. This framework is a keymechanism for integrating federal, stateand local government planning agendas,linking infrastructure and service provisionto manage future population change, andproviding certainty to communities andthe business sector.use, nor does it specify region-specificvariation to current state planningpolicies.Statutory regionalplansRegional iesRegional ional plansRegional vision anddesired regional outcomesRegionalwater plansand strategiesOther tplansRegionaltransportplansRegional infrastr

before undertaking regional planning to encompass all of the Darling Downs, the state government will review the appropriateness of the Maranoa–Balonne boundary. The Maranoa–Balonne Regional Plan is now final, but may be subject to early review in the light of future regional planning boundary decisions. The regional plan applies to the western