Northern Tablelands fares well in state budget
Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall has welcomed a record $102.4 million of capital expenditure for the electorate, including the first funding allocation for the redevelopment of Armidale Rural Referral Hospital, announced in the 2015/16 NSW Budget.
He said close to three quarters ($74.1 million) of the funding would be spent on upgrades to roads and bridges across the Northern Tablelands, an increase of $22 million from last year’s budget.
“I am particularly pleased to see the first allocation of funds ($1 million) which kick off the redevelopment of Armidale Rural Referral Hospital later this financial year – the first time ever a State Budget has committed funds to this essential project, which will be completed by July 2019,” he said.
“This is another incredibly exciting step for the Armidale community, which can now be assured of seeing tangible progress this financial year.
“The remainder of the $60 million funding commitment will be allocated in subsequent budgets, when the bulk of construction activity will occur.
“The $30 million redevelopment of Inverell District Hospital, as anticipated, was not factored into this year’s budget as Hunter New England Area Health has only just begun the planning process.”
Mr Marshall said he was delighted with the huge expenditure on many important road and bridge projects right across the electorate, which councils and their communities were looking forward to.
“Funding of more than $74 million will be spent on major projects and upgrades on the Newell, Gwydir and New England Highways, including bridge upgrades along Fossickers Way and Thunderbolts Way, and funding to construct a new roundabout near Armidale Regional Airport,” he said.
“The scope of works to be undertaken across Northern Tablelands roads and bridges is unprecedented and will be welcomed by the community and longstanding problem areas start to be addressed.
“There is also $14.2 million allocated to routine maintenance and upgrade of our regional roads and $10.3 million for our local councils to undertake improvements works on their local roads.
Commenting on the overall budget, Mr Marshall said the government’s hard work in rebuilding the State’s finances over recent years had paid dividends, delivering a $713 underlying surplus while at the same time slashing the state's net debt by more than $24 billion.
“There is no doubt that NSW is now the economic powerhouse of Australia and there are exciting times ahead for regional NSW with the plan to allocate $6 billion in projects across the regions from Rebuilding NSW,” he said.
“I now look forward to working closely with all the communities in the Northern Tablelands to ensure our interests get the attention they deserve over the next 12 months and beyond.”
Some of the budget highlights for the Northern Tablelands include:
- $3.8 million to complete final stage of the Moree Newell Highway bypass
- $4 million for Nee Nee Creek Bridge repairs, 46km north of Moree on Newell Highway
- $4 million to upgrade Newell Highway road pavement from Mungle Back Creek to Boggabilla
- $3.09 million to Inverell Shire Council for road maintenance
- $2.8 million to upgrade New England Highway between Uralla and Armidale
- $2.07 million to Moree Plains Shire Council for road maintenance
- $2 million to upgrade Newell Highway at Gurley
- $1.8 million to upgrade Newell Highway 14km south of Moree
- $1.8 million to upgrade Gwydir Highway west of Glen Innes
- $1.74 million to Gwydir Shire Council for road maintenance
- $1.5 million to upgrade the Gwydir River Bridge at Bingara
- $1.4 million for New England Highway pavement upgrade north of Glencoe
- $1.3 million to upgrade Waterfall Way from St Helena Creek to Four Mile Creek
- $1.3 million to upgrade the Guyra to Ebor Road
- $1.3 million to upgrade the New England Highway east of Delungra
- $1.2 million for New England Highway pavement upgrade south of Uralla
- $1.1 million to Uralla Shire Council for road maintenance
- $1.1 million for pavement upgrades on Fossickers Way between Bingara and the Gwydir Highway
- $800,000 to upgrade Halls Creek Bridge north of Bingara
- $677,000 to Armidale Dumaresq Council for road maintenance
- $800,000 to upgrade Cobbadah Creek Bridge on Fossickers Way
- $579,000 to Glen Innes Severn Council for road maintenance
- $600,000 for Gwydir Highway drainage upgrades on the Gibraltar Range
- 10.1 million to continue the Moree East Public School redevelopment
- $1 million for the commencement of the redevelopment of the Armidale Rural Referral Hospital
- $1.03 million for Bingara, Inverell and Tablelands Community Transport Services
- $1.7 million for Moree Remote Indigenous Housing
- $470,000 for a new Aboriginal Housing unit in Armidale
- $1.45 million for social housing upgrades across the electorate
- $710,000 to replace Abington Creek Bridge on Thunderbolts Way