Bundaberg Regional Council is encouraging residents to nominate mobile phone black spots to help improve coverage.
The Australian Government has committed $380 million to the Mobile Black Spot Program to invest in telecommunications infrastructure to improve mobile coverage and competition across Australia.
The Government is proposing to run an additional round of the program, which will continue to expand and improve mobile coverage for regional and remote Australia.
The program is supported by co-contributions from state and local governments, and mobile network operators Optus, Telstra and Vodafone, and seeks to improve sites of low mobile coverage.
Bundaberg Region Mayor Jack Dempsey said Council was seeking input from residents to identify where this infrastructure was needed.
“This program helps to deliver essential services to many Australians who would otherwise not have access to telecommunications services,” Mayor Dempsey said.
“Having reliable communications channels in remote parts of the region when natural disasters strike is critical for protecting vulnerable population areas.
“Moreover, employing new technologies in these areas where previous applications may not have been favourable due to low population densities is critical to delivering essential, and potentially lifesaving infrastructure.
“Bundaberg Regional Council is looking forward to collaborating with the many stakeholders involved to further improve mobile broadband accessibility across the Bundaberg Region.”
Under the first five rounds of the program, the Government's commitment has generated investment of more than $836 million, delivering 1229 new base stations across Australia.
Council's Executive Director of Strategic Projects and Economic Development, Ben Artup, encouraged residents to take part in a survey.
“Mobile network operators including Optus and Telstra have been successful in securing funding under previous Mobile Black Spot funding rounds to improve coverage in more rural parts of the Bundaberg Region including Bucca, Avondale, Maroondan, Redridge North, Winfield and Bungadoo,” he said.
“Furthermore, the continuation of the Mobile Black Spot Program is consistent with Bundaberg Regional Council's 100 Gig Bundaberg, an initiative with the aim to provide broadband access across the region.”
Nominations close on 24 July 2020.
Any questions regarding submissions should be directed to Council’s Strategic Projects and Economic Development department via email at [email protected].