The change of Federal Government has meant plans to upgrade Moama Beach are now in jeopardy.By Jess Craig
The planned Moama Beach upgrade is in jeopardy because of the change of Federal Government, despite funding already being committed to the project.
The upgrade was to be part of Murray Shire Council’s Moama Murray River Access Plan.
The Rudd Government had committed $233,699 under round five of the Regional Development Australia fund to the project, but with the change of government the funding is now in doubt.
Council was also to contribute almost $125,000 to the upgrade, which would have seen new roadworks and paths to improve vehicle and pedestrian access, as well as construction of a carpark, retaining wall and other aesthetic improvements.
Murray Shire Council general manager Greg Murdoch said it was disappointing.
‘‘We’ve received news that because of the change in Government, these funds are now under threat,’’ Mr Murdoch said.
‘‘We’ve made representations through (Member for Farrer) Sussan Ley asking the Coalition to honour the commitment that was made by the previous government.
‘‘These funds are now in doubt across Australia and I know a number of councils in NSW are also making representations through their local members about this issue.
‘‘It’s not a good start for a new government to get councils and shires off-side. I’m hopeful we’ll be successful in retaining the funding, and the project will go ahead.’’
The Riv understands that the Rudd Government did not sign off on the funding allocation prior to entering caretaker mode after announcing the September 7 federal election.
A spokesperson for Ms Ley said she would look to liaise with the Riverina and Murray Regional Organisation of Councils.
‘‘Sussan will look to discuss with RAMROC what the most important projects are in the region and how they can go forward, and she will then take those projects to (Regional Development Minister) Warren Truss,’’ the spokesperson said.
‘‘There is nothing to say that these projects won’t go ahead in the future.’’
Council is also waiting to hear if they have received funds through the NSW Government Better Boating Program.
The project is expected to cost around $200,000 and could start this financial year, if funds are received.
The proposed project will involve the construction of a retaining wall and the addition of short-term and overnight mooring sites.
Work could also include repairs to the wharf and drainage discharges, with a focus on stopping erosion through rock beaching and vegetation
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