An incomplete fence at a building site

Wellcamp COVID quarantine facility costing Queensland government almost $200 million after figures released in budget estimates hearing

Queensland’s Deputy Premier has revealed it cost the state government about $150 million to lease the controversial Wellcamp quarantine facility on the Darling Downs.

The details of the secret deal were revealed in a budget estimates hearing at Parliament today, with the total capital and leasing costs for the center amounting to $198.5 million.

Steven Miles said the Wellcamp facility would not be needed for COVID quarantine beyond August this year.

“With increased vaccination coverage and community acceptance of COVID-19, the need for dedicated isolation facilities or for any contingency capacity to have been held has decreased,” he said.

“The QRAC (Queensland Regional Accommodation Centre) will be placed in care and maintenance under similar arrangements to those in Howard Springs in the Northern Territory.

“It will cease hosting guests from August 1 but will remain available should the pandemic response settings change.”

The quarantine facility is known as the “Queensland regional accommodation centre”.(ABC Southern Qld: Peter Gunders)

Since opening to guests on February 5 this year, 730 people have been quarantined or isolated at the Wellcamp facility.

He said he had advised the federal government the quarantine facility being built at Pinkenba also would not be required given there was no longer a need for it.

Earlier this year, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed the state had contributed $48.8 million to help build the Wellcamp facility, which is privately owned by the Wagner Corporation.

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