Tennis court upgrades, improvements to local park amenities and child care centre refurbishments are among the latest projects announced for the Liverpool Plains under its second $1 million instalment of the Australian Government’s Drought Communities Program.
Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, said the new projects will be undertaken by Liverpool Plains Shire Council and follow delivery of an initial $1 million each for all 10 local government areas in the New England.
The first round delivered improvements to the Shire’s Freedom Camping areas, a new water tank at Blackville hall and Wallabadah hall as well as additions to the Emergency Services Precinct which helped spur economic recovery from drought in the region.
The second $1 million investment in drought relief for the Liverpool Plains features eight community facility and infrastructure developments and upgrades throughout the Shire where local businesses and contractors will be engaged to participate in the delivery of the projects, supporting regional employment and stimulating the local economy.
Projects to be delivered include:
1) The final stages of the Quirindi Library Precinct upgrade.
2) The installation of air-conditioning units at the Plains Fitness Centre in Quirindi.
3) The refurbishment and upgrade of the public amenities at popular Bell Park in Quirindi.
4) The refurbishment of the well-utilised Eastside Childcare centre in Quirindi.
5) The installation of a new canteen/amenities facility at David Taylor Oval, Werris Creek.
6) The resurfacing of the Tennis courts at Warrah Creek Community Hall.
7) The refurbishment of the amenities block at the Willow Tree recreation centre.
8) The refurbishment of the bore at Quirindi Showground to make it operational.
Mr Joyce said the funding will build on the community confidence following recent rain and help support economic recovery from drought.
“The effects of this drought on farmers and communities on the Liverpool Plains are far from over,” Mr Joyce said.“That’s why we are continuing to roll out support like this which will create jobs, improve local infrastructure and keep money ticking through our towns, no matter the circumstances.
“We are here for communities like Quirindi and the surrounding villages - be it from drought, flood or now Coronavirus - and we will be here to support them for as long as it takes.”
Liverpool Plains Shire Council Mayor, Councillor Andrew Hope, welcomed the announcement of funding for the projects.
“This could not have come at a better time for our community,” Mayor Hope said.
“This Federal Government program supports communities in the most drought-affected regions of Australia. It will provide a welcome injection of money into the local economy and opportunities for local businesses, contractors and their workforce. The projects will also provide long-term infrastructure benefits for our community.
“I’d like to thank Federal Member for New England, Barnaby Joyce, and the government of which he is a member, for their support during tough times. At a time when our community is still reeling from the impacts of drought, followed by a natural disaster flooding event and now the COVID-19 crisis, partnerships like this between the tiers of government are invaluable and help boost morale, resilience and the local economy of our rural community. We are grateful for the assistance forthcoming.”
The Coalition Government has committed $300 million over four years to the Drought Communities Program Extension, to facilitate immediate economic stimulus in communities facing hardship and support projects that provide local employment to keep money invested in local shops and suppliers.