Rockhampton Region councillor Tony Williams (left) and former Rockhampton MP Bill Byrne were happy to see the North Rockhampton boat ramp facility get the green light, but what will happen now after the collapse of JM Kelly Group?
Rockhampton Region councillor Tony Williams (left) and former Rockhampton MP Bill Byrne were happy to see the North Rockhampton boat ramp facility get the green light, but what will happen now after the collapse of JM Kelly Group? Leighton Smith

Doubt lingers over JM Kelly's incomplete State Govt projects

THE future of nine Queensland Government construction contracts is unclear following the collapse of the JM Kelly Group.

Four of the building projects were still underway when the Rockhampton company went into receivership in October, and a further five completed projects remain inside the defect notification period.

A spokesman for the Department of Housing and Public Works told The Morning Bulletin that individual departments were responsible for the projects they managed.

However two of the departments contacted said they would continue to work with DHPW.

Shadow Minister for Housing and Public Works Michael Hart said communities and workers were crying out for answers.

"People's jobs and community projects are on the line, but the Palaszczuk Government has gone to ground," Mr Hart said.

"We have no certainty around what projects will be saved and who will be responsible for fixing defects on JM Kelly buildings if they emerge."

Mr Hart said the LNP would keep digging for answers.

"We don't know why the government kept working with JM Kelly, despite the fact that serious concerns were being raised about the company in 2016 and 2017," he said.

"It's time for Annastacia Palaszczuk and Housing Minister Mick de Brenni to stop dodging questions and tell Queenslanders the full story behind the JM Kelly scandal."

Rockhampton Hospital Stage 1B is an ongoing project and a Health Department spokesperson told The Morning Bulletin that Queensland Health had engaged the Building and Asset Services (BAS) division of the Department of Housing and Public Works to manage the works needed to complete Stage 1B, the central sterilisation department.

 

The North Rockhampton Boat Ramp under construction adjacent to Callghan Park racecourse.
The North Rockhampton Boat Ramp under construction adjacent to Callghan Park racecourse. Chris Ison ROK290618cboatramp1

A spokesperson for the Department of Transport and Main Roads, responsible for the $3million Callaghan Park, boat ramp, floating walkway and car trailer park construction, said it had been notified that JM Kelly Builders had recently entered into voluntary administration.

The project is still under the defect period.

"This has not resulted in the termination of the contract," they said.

"TMR is considering its options in respect to defective works (and) will continue to work through the issues to bring the project to completion as soon as possible."

Rockhampton State High School (administration and Indigenous Centre refurbishment), Mount Morgan State High School (manual arts building) and Biloela State High School (science and gym buildings) all remain under the notification period.

An Education Department spokesperson said that, given the schools are departmental assets, the department would continue to work with Department of Housing and Public Works and the administrators to ensure any defects were dealt with appropriately.



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