Hitech startups were fostered with $140M startup fund over 4 years from DSITI (Budget Paper 4 2015-16). Curtis Pitt, treasurer, visited Caboolture Sports Club in 22/7/15.
In May 2012 (AFR 5-6/5/12), Brisbane is the only city paying carbon tax. This will slow the excessive growth and reduce the debt from all the infrastructure projects that no-one is willing to pay for except the Commonwealth Government.
In January 2015, ALP formed government by agreement with 1 independent Peter Wellington. DSITIA became DSITI.
In March 2012, LNP won the state election with 78 seats, ALP has 7 seats, Australia Party has 2 seats and others have 2 seats of total of 89. All the 20 inner Brisbane City state electorates were lost from ALP to LNP! Staggering switch! First time in 80 years!
Campbell Newman (can do Campbell) ex Lord Mayor of Brisbane beat Anna Bligh soundly. He is now fixing the huge debts ($4Bn).
In January 2011, Brisbane was hit with major floods. I just left before they hit! There was $5.8Bn in damages to real estate and infrastructure so the Commonwealth Government will pay 75% of costs including buildings, roads and $25,000 per small business and $1000 per household. Many houses got no money as the insurance companies said the floods were an act of God in their case and copped out. It was better to get stuff away from flood prone areas on back of truck if warned rather than try to get repairs done after the floods hit via insurance claim or government handout. Woolworths, NSW Govt and plenty of others have donated millions towards the flood victims in Queensland.
Brisbane City Council provides an early warning alert service for floods and storms. They email or SMS you with info.
Most inland Queensland was flooded plus a Cyclone in January 2011 hammered Queensland. Wivenhoe Dam water was released in January 2011 which flooded the Lockyer Valley and killed several people instead of releasing it gradually before it got to critical levels (99%). Locals tried to sue the SEQwater Water Authorities but lost (SEQwater - Qld Govt Inquiry).
In April 2011, Councillor Campbell Newman stepped down as Mayor of Brisbane and was Leader of the Queensland Opposition and the Liberal National Party as the ALP did such a bad job of supporting flood victims in the January 2011 Brisbane floods. Campbell Newman is a member of the Liberal National Party and was the only Liberal Government leader as mayor of Brisbane in the whole of Australia till NSW and Victoria fell to Liberals in 2011.
As of March 2009, the Queensland Government had a $1.6Bn AUD deficit, 3 times worse than NSW ($640M AUD). So all the businesses are waiting for the Queensland Government to pay instead of doing business with other businesses so the Queensland Government has gotten into too much debt! There was no change in government on 21 March 2009 so the deficit will stay high leaving higher Commonwealth Government aid necessary to get Queensland into good economic shape again!
By March 2010, Queensland is smarter and pushing hard in amazing ways to grow its economy. It is selling off QR Freight for $3Bn, track and rollingstock in one package. However the January 2011 floods wiped out all the capital raised by the QR float.
In 2011/12, Queensland predicts a $4.058Bn deficit due to the floods and Cyclone Yasi in January 2011.
LNP Government under Campbell Newman has frozen programs and cut expenditure in April 2012.
This is a growing area. The Queensland Government does heaps more for the state than in New South Wales where private enterprise seems to take over a lot of the supporting roles to the detriment of rural towns outside of Sydney - no dollars means no services in country NSW e.g Telstra slacking off when there are no dollars outside of Sydney CBD. This leaves rural towns in NSW to either do it tough and use their brains to outwit the greedy city boys or give up and move back to the city again with all its inherent cost problems when you are small. So Queensland beckons with its low costs and easy to do business.
In 2008 we moved to Brisbane for Web work. We did some local work but are now finding our own way and getting our own business going again in a hurry. Luckily payments from NSW started coming in around this time so I was not so hard up to pay regular bills and give me a chance to adapt or return to NSW again which I did when I was kicked out. Queensland is much more advanced than when we left in 1988 to seek work in Sydney however it is still very hard to get going if you are new and unknown. Queensland is a bit old fashioned re needing to have a formal office or people will not do business with you.
In February 2010, I found a Web customer in Sumner Park industrial estate, west of Brisbane towards Ipswich an up and coming area of South East Queenland, the growth area of Australia. To finish the Website off quicker, I visited the customer onsite in March 2010 via train to Darra and 452 bus to Sumner Park or 460 bus from city. This was because I moved my registered office to Rochedale, Logan, QLD from December 2009 to September 2010. In September 2010 I returned my registered office to Orange because of logistics and lack of sales in Queensland. This was the first success with my Web business in Queensland since starting in 2008 to try and get customers up here! Many thanks to family who helped me get a base in Brisbane while travelling around NSW, ACT and Victoria the past 2 years! Centenary Computers sell second hard ex Government IT equipment and parts at Sumner Park - good find! 50% of businesses in Sumner Park were under water up to the roof in January 2011 floods.
In February 2011, I reconnected with an old Web customer in Coorparoo who moved from Sydney to Brisbane around 2008 to redo this Website. End of me doing that site was in March 2016.
Queensland is a very go-ahead place for running a small business if you can get it started up here which can be difficult if you are new. There is plenty of money in QLD for existing businesses, not poverty stricken like NSW where everyone stops paying for services and leaves us in the lurch for months unless pushed by late-fees or in-person visits! NSW is a dog in comparison to QLD's vigor for its own businesses. In September 2008, NSW went through recession.
The Queensland Government is the best place to start when doing business in Queensland. They respond and have good scope for business with plenty of relevant seminars to get businesses investing in the area. They also use the internet extensively to service the state which is far-flung and stretched out - 1400km from Brisbane to Cairns/Townsville.
In December 2013, Brisbane GPO is a very bureaucratic post office, worst in Australia I've found. Sydney or Orange post offices were much more helpful. They make it difficult to move company PO Box from one city to another without mountains of paperwork to justify it. Call Centre was more helpful 131318.
Since I listed my business briefly in Brisbane in 2008, I have had 2 or 3 cold calls from Brisbane or Gold Coast companies thinking I was still up there! They were always slimey and dodgy around money, loans and taxes. Queensland has poor bankruptcy laws and it is very hard to get money out of debtors up there. Money is loaned in Queensland with no collateral so many times debts are never paid and companies go broke owing many customers and suppliers money. A big white goods manufacturer went broke in Maroochydore on the Sunshine Coast in 2010. Many builders have gone under owing money to clients in Queensland since 2008.
Brisbane is much more pro open-source software based development (which is what I do to a large degree) than Sydney who do mostly software development on commercial software platforms like Microsoft or Oracle. (PHP Meetup Brisbane has over 310 members whereas Sydney only has 50!) Brisbane is not scared to talk about or use PHP and MySQL so I will keep in touch with Brisbane PHP and MySQL developer communities as they are very profitable for networking in Queensland. Also the Queensland Government is looking at the advantages of developing an open-source software based ICT sector which is very encouraging after being stuffed around in Sydney in open sourced based systems which they judge are cheap and nasty which they are not! (Aug 2008)
Red Hat the largest Linux distributor has its Asia-Pacific Office in Brisbane, QLD. Red Hat has launched a new Brisbane Headquarters in August 2008, so open source is very much alive and well in Queensland compared to other states. I think I've made the right business decision to relocate our Linux-focused business to Brisbane from Sydney and Orange back in 2008 and later in 2011.
Solar Winds, system support software, are base in Brisbane as is Oracle and IBM! Solar Winds has excellent service!
In late 2007, we contacted Prof Brian Lovell, ITEE, University of Queensland and are working on their open source project IAPR Commence, a conference paper management system, which was developed in PHP and MySQL by IT honours students, where I studied my BSc in 1981-87. We extended it and used it in one of our projects, donating our improvements back to the project in return for use of the open source software which saved us $1000s! This is a win-win situation of the IT industry feeding back into the academic circles to help develop students for the badly lacking industry! There is a 50% drop in software engineers graduating from Australian univerities from 2002-2007 so we as an IT industry need to start taking an interest in the universities such as the University of Queensland ITEE and start fostering local talent so the software engineering industry doesn't die in Australia and be outsourced totally to India.
In April 2012, I attended GeoRabble, an open source mapping/GIS/GPS technology interest group, at Pig n Whistle, 123 Eagle St, Brisbane.
In 2009, Arjen Lentz started Upstarta a lean business incubator in iLab, Toowong now Indooroopilly QLD. I met Arjen at Griffith Uni in April 2010 at BarCamp Queensland where he gave a presentation on Upstarta methodology.
iLab is a new UQ IT business incubator. Jentla is there and doing very well with opensource Joomla extensions (Alabama US project) Jan 2010.
As Queensland businesses are parochial and will not do business with you for ages (too laidback) unless they know you first which can lead to cashflow shortages, we are now doing business interstate in NSW and ACT to keep afloat and gave up waiting for the first Queensland job to materialise. In May 2008, we nearly got a Sydney customer to service them from Queensland via the Internet. People in Queensland from interstate are easy to deal with. Most people are only interested in helping themselves and not lending a hand to others like us, which makes it very tough to get going. Queensland is like country NSW in that it is refuses to reply to mail or phone calls to start a job. They call when they are ready which makes it impossible to get anywhere!
In March 2010, I attended via train from Park Rd Brisbane to Helensvale, BarCamp Queensland at Building 30 (Multimedia), Griffith Uni, Southport and found Gold Coast Innovation Centre (GCIC). Gold Coast is a strong centre for IT startups! I saw them at CeBIT in Sydney 3 or 4 years ago pushing for me to move my IT business to near Bond Uni Gold Coast Robina campus once.
Business Gold Coast says in June 2012 they got an NBN Co call centre.
In October 2010, I attended BarCamp Queensland at The Edge near State Library of Queensland and gave a talk on Violin and IT.
In April, July and October 2010, I attended University of Queensland 100th anniversary celebrations including an ITEE alumni dinner at which I met many very interesting fellow graduates in IT.
Translink go cards for bus, train and ferry in Brisbane area can be topped up over the Web or using EFTPOS at train stations - very convenient!
Bus trips in Brisbane can get quite expensive. In one day with many trips I paid $8. Brisbane needs a weekly pass like Canberra's ACTION.
In February 2013, Gold Coast light rail is being built between Broadbeach, Surfers Paradise and Southport by 2014. Also Griffith University Gold Coast and Gold Coast University Hospital is going up in Parkwood near cemetery, quite a growth spurt!
The yuppies (25-30 year olds) are cliquey wherever they are (NSW, QLD). Queensland seems to be overrun with yuppies in Brisbane at present due to them moving up from NSW and Victoria to save money. Everywhere in Brisbane there are people under 30 who are me-focused. This is improving for people over 40 to get on today in Brisbane who lived here in the 1980s and are more group-focused and social. Now they are all selfish and inward looking and very hard to work with unless you help them directly. They don't see the bigger picture. If you are over 40, take care as you may be pushed to one side by anti-social youths. The only positive side is young people are enthusiastic and able to change quicker than older people so Queensland has become more dynamic. See about Generation Y's habits in the economy - no assets, hyperactively living it up. I had a customer like this in Wollongong!
From 2012, functions of the former Department of Employment, Economic Development and Innovation are now administered by the following departments:
These and Queensland Justice and Attorney-General are a lot tighter up here and you feel more protected than in New South Wales where no-one helps the worker, just big business. WorkCover Qld is more modern and uses social engineering and decentralised management, not the Dickensian English laws in New South Wales which load all costs onto central management to no real benefit. People here are much more oriented to small businesses like us and we find it easy to do business in Queensland. Fair Work Commission administers wages.
Workplace Health and Safety Queensland, WorkCover Queensland, Workers' Compensation Regulator and Electrical Safety Office have merged as of October 2017.
People although not as rich as New South Wales pay their bills and are happy for you to see them again.
Drivers' licences and other transport matters can be handled online via the Queensland Dept of Transport and Main Roads's Website, a great idea considering Queensland is a large state and this will reduce the paperwork and make life more efficient when dealing with Queensland Transport. Also driver's licences are much less expensive than in NSW.
The only downside is finding accommodation near transport as Brisbane transport only runs on specific routes and often cuts out after 6pm unless it is a major road, not as extensive as Sydney or Melbourne. You may need a car, take a taxi or stay overnight near the Brisbane Transit Centre to link accommodation and transport needs e.g. early interstate or interurban buses or trains.
It is very hard to make money busking in Brisbane. The Brisbane City Council only has auditions for permits in Queen St Mall every 3 months and I could not pass the audition although I have played in Sydney, Melbourne, Orange and Castlemaine.