Proserpine lands a big catch

Whitsunday Regional Council Mayor, Andrew Willcox, and Deputy Mayor, Councillor John Collins, embarked in January on a fishing trip to hook extra funding to kick start the Lake Proserpine Master Plan project.

In early April they landed the big one that didn’t get away when the Palaszczuk Government announced $1.5 million funding from their Building our Regions (BoR) program.

Mayor Willcox said this would bolster Council’s $650,000 in capital funds and $1 million from the Queensland and Commonwealth Government’s jointly funded Tourism Recovery Fund.

“To turn $650,000 of our money into $3.15 million is the perfect outcome for our community.

“This increased funding will help Council on our mission to put the Whitsunday region on the global fishing map.

“As a keen fisherman myself, I am thrilled the Queensland Government has recognised the beauty and potential of Lake
Proserpine as Australia’s best impounded barramundi fishing destination.

“Our ultimate aim is to make Lake Proserpine a tourism hotspot attracting more tourists to the region with flow-on benefits including local jobs.”

Cr Collins said, “This Lake Proserpine Master Plan is an exciting step toward making Proserpine an even stronger regional town within the Whitsunday region and making it a fishing hotspot both nationally and internationally.

“Hot on the heels of $10 million for the Proserpine Administration Building and $10 million for a new entertainment centre the future looks bright as this huge investment in infrastructure means jobs for our community.

“Every extra dollar we attract from external sources allows us to be able to do more of the staged Master Plan so any time Council can turn $650,000 into $3 million is a great outcome.”

Member for Mackay Julieanne Gilbert said, “Lake Proserpine is undoubtedly one of Queensland’s finest fishing jewels and a big regional drawcard for local and visiting fishers.

“However, the lake has untapped potential to be an international drawcard for anglers looking for the ultimate fishing experience, offering higher catch rates and larger median fish sizes than anywhere in Australia.

“Fishing is the largest driver of domestic leisure tourism in Australia, and demand for fishing experiences has grown 36 percent in the past three years.

“This project will help the Whitsunday region capture a greater share of this market.”