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Straight in the bin with you.
However, the state’s tourism minister Stirling Hinchliffe has confirmed the mega theme park redirected that money towards the Steel Taipan rollercoaster.
“In early 2020, Dreamworld requested that the project be placed on hold while it focused its future investment activities on new rides and attractions,” he said during the budget estimates hearing.
Under the Growing Tourism Infrastructure Fund, Dreamworld was granted funds to build a new attraction to boost tourism post Covid-19 lockdown and given the green light to ‘repurpose’ the money.
"The Queensland government approved that the funding previously approved for the research facility be repurposed to support the construction of the new ride, taking into consideration the immediate impacts of the pandemic and the appeal of new tourism offers likely to attract returning domestic visitors and international tourists when borders reopened,” Hinchliffe said.
“I am pleased to advise that where that ended up was in the newest attraction, the Steel Taipan, which opened in December 2021.”
The Liberal National party’s spokesperson for the environment, Sam O’Connor, said as he scratched his head: “So the koala lab funding went to a rollercoaster?”
Despite over 64,000 koalas perishing during the 2019-2020 Black Summer bushfires, prompting them to be moved to the endangered list earlier this year, Dreamworld STILL used these funds to build a ride?!
Australia’s government called bushfire damage to wildlife an "ecological disaster." The military is clearing up scores of dead animals.— AJ+ (@ajplus) January 13, 2020
The fires have:
▪️ Wiped out 1/3 of a major koala habitat
▪️ Burned 1/3 of wildlife habitat Kangaroo Island
▪️ Killed an est. 1B animals pic.twitter.com/7dmTMDeqqP
9 News reports that Gold Coast City Council councillor Hermann Vorster slammed the Queensland theme park for deceiving the public about their spending.
He said: "I think the government has helped Dreamworld build a ride but the taxpayer has been taken for a ride and unfortunately the koalas have become short-changed too.”
Vorster continued: "Koalas need our help yesterday, they need our help today and they'll always need our help tomorrow.
"The community should have had full transparency if the government changed their minds because maybe then people would change the government."
Featured Image Credit: dreamworldau / Instagram. Alamy Stock Photo.
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