MEDIA RELEASE: EMBARGOED to Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Former Queensland Director-General of Agriculture, Jack Noye, has been appointed to the Board of Granite Belt Water Limited as it continues to stride towards delivery of Emu Swamp Dam and critical water infrastructure to transform the region.

Mr Noye, who served as chief executive of Trade and Investment Queensland until 2016, and has held numerous senior roles across government and military, joins five other highly qualified board members (see table below).

Granite Belt Water Chairman, Dan Hunt, who is also a previous Director-General of several agencies, and has an extensive track record across water infrastructure and policy as former Chair of SEQWater, said he was delighted to bring Mr Noye’s respected and unique blend of experience to the group.

“To bring someone with Jack’s knowledge and experience, and an intimate understanding of the urgent need for greater investment in water infrastructure, into our ongoing work will be utterly invaluable,” Mr Hunt said.

“We’re delighted to have him working with us on what we believe is one of the most important pieces of infrastructure currently proposed in Queensland, particularly within the context of the current catastrophic drought and our responsibility to plan for the future.”

Mr Hunt said the Board was also seeking local stakeholders to join a number of sub-committees to help steer the Project, including the Customer Sub-Committee and Audit, Risk and Finance Sub-Committee.

“This project will be transformational for the Granite Belt so it is imperative we tap into local skills and knowledge as we work towards providing the region with this enormous opportunity to grow and prosper,” he said.

The Granite Belt Irrigation Project will deliver the first new dam built in Queensland in a decade at Emu Swamp, south-west of Stanthorpe, and 117km of pipeline to provide water to 51 agribusiness customers. With water security a current restraint on the region, the Project is poised to boost the value of annual gross agricultural production by $68 million and create 700 long-term jobs in farming and support industries, while growing the Granite Belt’s contribution to the supply of high-quality and safe food.

The Project has committed funding of $23.4 million from local irrigators, $47 million from the Australian Government and a conditional commitment of $13.6 million from the Queensland Government. The State and Commonwealth are currently negotiating a bilateral schedule for rollout of the funding.

Mr Hunt said a number of important engagement activities continued to drive the Project forward.

“These include contact with the Coordinator-General around project approvals and discussions with the Queensland Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy in relation to water purchase allocations,” he said.

“We speak regularly with key State and Commonwealth Ministers including Deputy Prime Minister, Michael McCormack, Federal Minister for Water Resources, Drought, Rural Finance, Natural Disaster and Emergency Management, David Littleproud, and State Minister for Natural Resources, Mines and Energy, Anthony Lynham.

“Additionally, we’re working with selected contractors in this pre-construction phase and are seeking to appoint key personnel such as Project Manager and Project Director.

“We’re on track to deliver this critical piece of infrastructure and look forward to working with Jack, the rest of the Board, government and our local stakeholders to do so.”

ENDS

The Granit Belt Water Limited Board:

Dan Hunt Chair
Dino Rizzato Local irrigator
Steve Tremellen Local accountant
Bill James Businessman and former president of the Stanthorpe & Granite Belt Chamber of Commerce
Vic Pennisi Southern Downs Regional Councillor and community champion
Jack Noye Former Director-General Agriculture and CEO Trade & Investment Queensland

Media contact: Stacey Wordsworth
stacey.wordsworth@bluehillpr.com.au
0438 394 371