Council sharpens its advocacy program

Following a bumper yield of good news, Mayor of Northern Grampians Shire Council, Cr Kevin Erwin said council is now setting its sights on the projects and priorities that will continue to shape our region.

Commitments and funding announcements from the federal government include multipurpose sporting developments at Lord Nelson Park and North Park, Western Highway duplication, Stawell Underground Physics Laboratory (SUPL) and the East Grampians Pipeline project.

“The last few months have delivered some fantastic results for the shire, thanks to a number of federal government announcements that will benefit the community,” Cr Erwin said.

“The state government has also delivered, with funding for Lord Nelson Park, a second daily coach service between Stawell and Halls Gap, a new town bus network in Stawell, the three year old kinder rollout, the Stawell Gift plus a major Fixing Country Roads grant to upgrade local roads and freight routes.”

“People are no doubt breathing easier now the state and federal elections are out of the way, but we have no intention of resting lightly.”

Over the last few weeks, council has met with Victorian ministers Jaclyn Symes and Adem Somyurek, to discuss development priorities within the region.

“Minister Symes was most interested in our regional development priorities, including the Heath Street Bridge project in Halls Gap, SUPL, the need for more housing development and workforce attraction and how we can access drought support for farmers doing it tough north of the Wimmera Highway.”

“We were pleased that Minister Somyurek has reached out to meet one-on-one with all small rural shires in the state, getting a direct understanding of the unique challenges we face achieving financial sustainability.”

“The Minister’s focus via the Local Government Rating System Review to find the most fair and equitable model for collecting rates is most welcome and we look forward to participating to inform that process.”

“We’ve also been in contact with our fantastic local federal representatives in Minister Dan Tehan and our new Member for Mallee, Dr Anne Webster to set up our next round of advocacy in Canberra.”

“A key part of council’s advocacy program is working with the community to identify the key priorities we need to make our region even better and get our federal and state governments to join us in that partnership.”

“With around fifty projects on the agena in our Council Plan, Budget and policy agenda, this work is ongoing year-round, as we align our priorities to chase every opportunity there is to attract and secure investment to grow our region.”

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