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State government fails JCU (James Cook University).

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I note Premier Peter Beattie’s denial in relation to the requested State Government funding for the Tropical Science Research precinct. Unfortunately for Mr Beattie I am aware of the circumstances of the request for a $10 million contribution to match the $10 million from James Cook University and CSIRO. I have had a number of meetings with JCU and CSIRO, because this is a once in a life time opportunity for JCU to establish a Tropical Science Precinct, that will see JCU as a leader in the world in tropical research. Mr Beattie’s failure to meet his requested contributions is a real setback for JCU. With local member Lindy Nelson-Carr on the university’s council I am disappointed that she wasn’t able to do more for the university. Mr Beattie often talks about his smart state concept, but it’s not smart to put hundreds of millions of dollars into the University of Queensland, and then to short change our JCU in a way that puts this very important project into doubt. Every year Mr Beattie takes $4 million in payroll tax out of our university, surely we should have expected him to have given that back over 2 years with an extra $2 million to meet the State Government’s part of this partnership? Let’s keep the pressure on Mr Beattie for the sake of JCU.