Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Water flows for farmers' scheme

A syndicate of Rochester district farmers have organised their own co-operative stock and domestic water supply after the closure of the Campaspe irrigation district.

GEOFF ADAMS November 28, 2012 12:00pm

Peter Walsh, Minister for Agriculture, Bruce Macague and Llew Vale from G-MW at the opening of the Campaspe Stock and domestic system.

After years of zero or small allocations from the Eppalock storage, most of the Campaspe irrigators opted to wind up irrigation in their area and take compensation packages.

But some of them also had a long-term plan to maintain access to water, and this season a group of 40 farmers has successfully established their own Campaspe West stock and domestic scheme.

It was officially opened by Water Minister Peter Walsh last Friday at the pump site next to Waranga Mallee Channel close to Northern Hwy.

Scheme chairman and farmer Bruce Macague said the piped system offered a more reliable and cleaner water supply for domestic and stock purposes.

The $1.5million system is part of the Goulburn-Murray Water connections project.

The project will come under the administration of another farmer-owned syndicate at Campaspe East, but the finances and costs will be kept separate.

‘‘We were able to use the experience of the people in the other scheme to help us get this scheme going,’’ Mr Macague said.

The Campaspe West users will have a $125/Ml fixed charge with other variable charges depending on the costs through the year. The pipe will go to about 60 outlets.

Mr Walsh commended the scheme committee and Goulburn-Murray Water for working together to deliver an important project.

Member for Rodney Paul Weller said it was a good example of sensible co-operation and negotiation which had secured a reliable water supply.

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