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Submissions for Bridges Renewal Programme to close 15 May

Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton is urging Local Government organisations in the Parkes Electorate at act quickly as the deadline for submissions to the latest round of the $360 million Bridges Renewal Programme looms.

Mr Coulton said previous funding rounds of the Programme have provided opportunities to apply for funding to have ageing bridges fixed, with up to half the cost met by the Australian Government. 

“This will be the third round of funding under the programme, which is continuing to keep communities connected and local industries profitable,” Mr Coulton said.

“Our councils can get on board by nominating local bridges that need upgrading or replacement. Residents who might like to put forward their ideas should get in touch with their Council to find out about any plans they have to nominate local bridges, or put forward suggestions,” he said.

“Better bridges improve safety and access for communities, and keep businesses and the road freight sector powering on – delivering dollars into the pockets of local businesses and supporting jobs.

“By working together with governments at all levels – particularly local Councils which often need a hand to get big-ticket projects underway – we are upgrading and repairing bridges in all corners of the country.

Mr Coulton said Round 2 of the Programme resulted in funding for 10 bridges throughout the Electorate including three in the Gilgandra and Walgett shires, two in the Warrumbungle Shire and one each in the Gunnedah and Narrabri Shires.

“We’ve already seen serious dollars put into fixing bridges in the region, with the Coalition Government investing $5,514,750 upgrade projects getting support under Round 2 of the Programme.

“Since Bridges Renewal started in 2014-15, around $211 million has been invested in 204 projects across the nation. That’s why it is such popular programme - it helps Councils tackle big-ticket upgrades they might not otherwise be able to take on.

“State, territory and local governments are eligible to apply for up to $5 million in Australian Government funding per project – that’s a significant sum of money for any organisation.”

Mr Coulton said nominated projects will go through a competitive merit-based selection process, with successful applicants eligible to receive up to 50 per cent of project costs, or $5 million.

Proponents should discuss priorities with their local communities, industry stakeholders, Regional Development Australia committees and relevant government road agencies early in the process of compiling their proposals.

Round Three is open for applications until 15 May 2017. Guidelines and proposal forms are now available on the Bridges Renewal Programme website at: www.infrastructure.gov.au/bridges

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