Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on the auctioneer's walkway at the Roma saleyards.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on the auctioneer's walkway at the Roma saleyards. Christian Berechree

Premier keeps job growth on the agenda in Roma

JOBS and economic growth were firmly on the agenda during the Queensland Premier's tour of Roma.

Adding to the list of recent high profile political visitors to the region, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk touched down in Roma on Monday.

During a visit to Roma Hospital, the Premier said she was committed to prioritising local employment during the hospital redevelopment.

"We want to make sure that people are getting employment here locally,” she said.

"I would have a very firm expectation that priority is given to local people involved in the construction, involved in the demolition, because this is their hospital.”

The first stage of demolition at Roma Hospital is scheduled to begin on Monday, January 23.

Premier Palaszczuk said the hospital was in desperate need of repair.

"It was absolutely ridiculous here. When the lifts weren't working they would have to take patients over the roof for emergency surgery,” she said.

The redevelopment would be an important step forward for healthcare in the region, she said.

"This is great news for the community, because this $70 million redevelopment is a great investment for the health of the families living in this region,” she said.

Visiting the regions was an essential part of her role, Premier Palaszczuk said.

"You can't sit behind a desk and make decisions that impact on people's lives unless you are out on the ground listening and understanding people's concerns and issues,” she said.

"Here, one of the biggest issues has been health in this region. That is why my government is putting $70 million into the redevelopment.”

The Premier also spoke about the wild dog fencing roll-out throughout part of south-west Queensland, saying it contributed to job growth in the region.

"What we've seen with the rolling out of the wild dog fencing is an opportunity for local employment, but also reinvigorating the sheep and wool industry that has been decimated,” she said.

Record cattle prices at the Roma saleyards were an encouraging sign for the industry and the region, she said. with over $160million worth of sales in Roma since June last year.