Key food-growing areas in Queensland will be protected immediately from mining and other development under an Australian-first policy.

Food bowls in parts of the Surat Basin in southern Queensland and the Emerald and Springsure region have been granted the highest level of protection as Strategic Cropping Land Protection Areas.

Environment Minister Kate Jones said the move, the first of its type in Australia, will ban mines that would make the land unusable for farming.

The Queensland State Government has proposed substantial savings after it promised to ‘take a razor to green tape in Queensland’.

The Victorian Government has released its first ‘Living Melbourne, Living Victoria’ roadmap for urban water usage and reform.

New South Wales has flagged its intention to push for a single federal tariff scheme for solar rebates following a tense week for the O’Farrell government after its plan to cut the state rebate from 60c to 40c per kilowatt was met with widespread public resistance.

The Victorian Government has announced a $1.2 million funding pack for 10 councils to undertake ‘essential planning activities’ that have been recommended by the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission (VBRC).

The proposed IR reforms to the NSW public service has ignited a war of words between premier Barry O’Farrell and opposition leader John Robertson.

The New South Wales Government is facing a class action supported by hundreds of disaffected solar unit installers and homeowners following the Government’s decision to significantly reduce its solar unit tariff program.

The Department of Employment, Education and Workplace Relations has released the Australian Jobs 2011 report into the state of employment in Australia, finding that employment with the public administration and safety sector is set to grow by 5.9%, or 40,900 jobs.

The Queensland Government has announced the allocation of its $20 million Community Development and Recovery Package, with 17 of the worst affected councils sharing in $9 million of the funding.

Gold Coast Mayor Ron Clarke has publically voiced his support for capping water price increases to Consumer Price Index (CPI) levels.

The Queensland Minister for the Environment Kate Jones has announced the final damage cost for the state’s parks, saying that over $20 million will be required to repair Queensland’s parks and forests.

Employment opportunities for skilled workers, particularly electricians and nurses, will rise substantially over the next five years, according to the Australian Jobs Report 2011.

A report released by the Productivity Commission has identified wide-ranging differences in the ways all levels of government plan and zone land uses and assess development proposals.

The NSW Government has announced that Kevin Young has been appointed as the new Managing Director of Sydney Water replacing Dr Kerry Schott.

Victorian Attorney-General Robert Clark has announced the appointment of Rodney Randall as the state’s newest Associate Judge of the Supreme Court and Andrew McKenna to the Magistrates' Court of Victoria.

The Victorian Government has outlined its $1 billion Regional Development Victoria (RDV) initiative, saying the program will a “wide-range of programs and initiatives to support jobs and growth in regional and rural Victoria”

Regional Western Australia is set to receive funding boosts under the state’s Regional Development Assistance Program (RDAP) with three residential subdivisions at Dalwallinu, Dowerin and Hyden.

$118 million in Federal funding has been announced for South Australia’s drought stricken Lower Lakes and Coorong areas after years of continual drought.

$4.9 million to help local communities protect and improve their renewable natural resources has been announced by the Western Australian Government

The Queensland Government has announced a new Energy and Water Ombudsman Queensland (EWOQ) following the retirement of Barry Adams.

The Queensland Geothermal Energy Centre of Excellence (QGECE) has been officially opened at the University of Queensland, with funding of $15 million from the Queensland Government allocated in 2007.

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