Council conference injects more than $100,000 into Roma
MORE than 150 delegates of mayors, councillors and staff filled Roma Cultural Centre for the biennial Local Government Association of Queensland Bush Councils Convention.
A conference that is hosted every two years and injects hundreds of thousands of dollars into the hosting region, every town in Queensland wants the opportunity but it was Maranoa Regional Council that snagged it this year.
Its magnitude and prominence drew visits from three ministers - two federal and one state - and two Queensland senators.
LGAQ chief executive Greg Hallam said it was a huge deal that Roma was hosting the conference.
"This is the fourth time we've held it and this is our biggest one yet - it's a terrific thing,” he said.
"Coming here we are injecting hundreds of thousands of dollars into the economy but it's also a media spotlight, after this event there will be the best of 500 Twitters that would have lit up the Twittersphere and Roma will be mentioned many times because of that.
"But importantly we talked about the big issues in council: water security, population decline, telecommunication and, of course, roads.
"These things are vitally important and we are delighted to be in Roma.
"Cameron O'Neil sits on the LGAQ Policy Executive and of course batted very hard to bring the conference to Roma and because of him we are here.”
Chairman for events and LGAQ Policy Executive Councillor O'Neil said he was thrilled the Maranoa hosted the signature conference for the rural, remote and regional Queensland councils.
"Hosting this conference has stimulated the local economy, with delegates staying for at least two nights in our hotels, eating at our cafes, pubs and restaurants and with ample time to visit the CBD, allowing for a bit of retail therapy,” Cr O'Neil said.
"This type of event is one of many that council aims to attract to the Maranoa to drive opportunities for stimulating our local businesses and economy.”