Small Coast town gets major phone coverage boost
BETTER internet access and mobile phone coverage has arrived in Poona.
The new mobile base station was turned on in late July, and will significantly improve phone service in the coastal community.
Member for Wide Bay Llew O'Brien was pleased local residents and businesses would now enjoy improved telecommunications.
"As someone who has lived and worked in regional areas for many years and relied heavily on telecommunications, I understand how important adequate mobile phone reception is in daily life and during emergencies," Mr O'Brien said.
"My constituents have raised the issue of poor mobile telephone service in parts of Poona and I'm pleased to be part of a Government that is listening and delivering these improved services."
The new mobile base station was completed by Telstra and is the latest of 17 sites across Wide Bay committed to receive new or improved mobile coverage under the program, including Glastonbury, Kin Kin, Gungaloon, Widgee, Woolooga, Maaroom, Pomona-Kin Kin Road, Tansey, Windera, Yerra, Oakview, Cinnabar, Boreen Point, Cootharaba, and Fraser Island.
"Our continued investment in mobile phone base stations is further proof of the Liberal and Nationals Government's commitment to connecting Australians, wherever they are, particularly in regional areas like Wide Bay," Mr O'Brien said.
Regional General Manager May Boisen said the Mobile Black Spot Program helped to bring rural and regional Queensland all the benefits that telecommunications and being connected can bring to our communities.
"Access to Telstra's fast, reliable and affordable mobile network is a crucial part of improving digital inclusion in Australia," Ms Boisen said.
"By improving mobile coverage in Wide Bay, we are enabling more people to get connected online through sharing on social media, streaming music and video and even working remotely.
"Our participation in the Mobile Black Spot Program is part of our long and proud history of investment in regional Australia, and when this round of the Program is complete, we will have contributed more than $280 million toward securing better connectivity for rural and regional Australia."
Minister for Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government Mark Coulton said the Coalition Government is committed to improving connectivity for people living in regional and rural areas.
"The improved service is thanks to the Liberal Nationals Government's $380 million Mobile Black Spot Program that is eradicating phone black spots across Wide Bay," Minister Coulton said.
"This government knows how frustrating it is to be talking on the phone and then loose service, so we're getting on with the job of building more phone towers to deliver better service.
"Not only will these towers make it easier for people to stay connected to family and friends, it will also make it easier to do business and access education."
Minister Coulton said the first four rounds of this highly successful program are funding 1047 new base stations in areas that are not commercially viable without Coalition Government investment, with more than 740 of them already online delivering benefits.
"More than 30,000 Triple 0 calls have so far been made possible through the Mobile Black Spot Program," Minister Coulton said.
An additional $160 million in new funding for rounds five and six of the program was announced earlier this year to continue to improve phone service for people in Australia's regions.
More information about the program is available at communications.gov.au/mbsp