No $10m for local RTOs
GLADSTONE has missed out on millions of dollars to train local workers needed for the new coal seam gas and liquefied natural gas industries
In March, Anna Bligh announced a flagship partnership with industry to develop a $10 million program to train thousands of workers needed for the new CSG and LNG industries.
“It's essential that our training system is geared to meet industry demand – that's why we're developing this program hand in hand with industry,” the Premier said.
However, no money has been allocated to any Gladstone training organisation, said the Member for Gladstone Liz Cunningham.
“The manager at Energy Skills Queensland advised me that the $10 million that was co-funded by CSG-LNG and government had already been allocated to SEQ,” Ms Cunningham said.
“Then I asked if any regional training organisation (RTO) outside SEQ received funding and the manager said no, but she did say that the RTOs that did get funding would be able to come up to Gladstone and do training.”
Minister for Education and Training Geoff Wilson said that under the $10 million skills fund, to date contracts in excess of $2.8 million had been issued by both the department and Energy Skills Queensland.
“Which will provide training support for Arrow Energy, Origin, Queensland Gas Corporation and Santos,” the minister said.
Ms Cunningham said the minister claimed that only 2.8 million dollars had been allocated yet the manager at Energy Skills Qld told her the $10 million had all been allocated for training.
“From my perspective, a good portion of the funding should have gone to the Surat Basin and Gladstone RTOs to ensure local training and employment of local residents to the greatest extent,” Ms Cunningham said.
“To allocate the funds to SEQ training organisations and then claim ‘they can send trainers up to Gladstone' undermines the local training organisations to work locally, to employ more trainers and to enhance training skills at local RTOs.”