The 2020-21 NSW Budget handed down on Tuesday provides a major boost for the things that matter in the Clarence and Richmond Valleys, according to NSW Nationals Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis.
“The big-ticket local item is $342 million to finish the last sections of the Pacific Highway upgrade which are mainly in the Richmond Valley,” Mr Gulaptis said.
“Funding has been committed as promised to get planning underway for the major redevelopment of Grafton Base Hospital.
“Five million dollars has been allocated this financial year to start building Iluka’s first-ever ambulance station. This is half the estimated total cost of the historic project.
“Smaller grants have been provided for a new cycleway/pathway linking Sextonville Road to South Casino, an accessibility upgrade at Casino Railway Station, rehabilitation and protection works in support of the Clarence River Erosion Management Plan, a new boat ramp at Wooli and a jetty upgrade at Flo Clarke Park in Lawrence.”
The Clarence and Richmond Valleys will benefit from a range of education initiatives including free pre-schooling, free student tutoring and the installation of energy-efficient lighting in public schools.
Mr Gulaptis said the NSW Nationals in the state government were also boosting the transformational Regional Growth Fund with a further $300 million to continue delivering grassroots projects to local communities, bringing the fund’s total to $2 billion.
The state government will also give every adult in NSW four $25 vouchers to spend separately on dining and entertainment as a stimulus measure to encourage visits to struggling cafes, restaurants and cultural institutions.
“I encourage all local residents to use those vouchers locally. They are designed to support your local small business, not go to Coffs Harbour, Ballina or Lismore,” Mr Gulaptis said.
For more information about the NSW Government’s 2020/21 Budget, please go to budget.nsw.gov.au.