The NSW Nationals in Government are continuing to announce funding for projects in regional areas under the Drought Stimulus Package.

NSW Nationals Member for Cootamundra and Parliamentary Secretary to the Deputy Premier Steph Cooke said the $170 million Drought Stimulus Package funded shovel-ready infrastructure projects that would deliver economic stimulus to local communities experiencing the flow-on effects of drought.

“Every day the crippling impact of drought extends further beyond the farm gate and it’s vital that we support off-farm industries by delivering infrastructure that drives business activity and generates new opportunities,” Ms Cooke said. “These projects will provide work for tradies, suppliers and many other workers who will in turn spend money in local shops and restaurants, supporting other local jobs and keeping money flowing through our towns.”

Two recent announcements were $1 million to transform the home of the world-famous Deni Ute Muster into a year-round tourism destination and a road safety upgrade in the Southern Highlands.

Ms Cooke visited the site of the Deni Ute Muster, which will soon be home to a brand new museum, a commercial kitchen, retail spaces, conference and meeting rooms and car park facilities. The funding will also provide solar power on site, a fully functional comet windmill and connections to town utilities, such as sewerage. She said the Drought Stimulus Package would help Deniliquin help itself become more resilient to drought.

“The Deni Ute Muster was born two decades ago when the town, suffering from the Millennium drought, created their very own tourism attraction, a rural themed festival that literally put Deniliquin on the map as Ute Capital of the World,” Ms Cooke said. “With regional NSW enduring another crippling drought, the town is responding by creating an even bigger and better Deni Ute Muster to attract visitors and expand its tourism economy.”

“What is fantastic about this vision is it will also generate new tourism opportunities, creating a site that can host a wide variety of events large and small year-round, while the museum will celebrate the amazing story of the Deni Ute Muster.”

Glenella Quarry, near Cowra, will also benefit from Drought Stimulus funding, with $1 million to boost its output and save transport costs with the upgrade of Battery Road.

“This upgrade is vital for improving the safety of motorists and freight operators, who carry high-grade quartz silica pebble out from the quarry,” Ms Cooke said. “The Nationals in Government are committed to improving road safety for heavy vehicle operators and this upgrade is a demonstration of that commitment. Being able to go to work and come home again safely is a right which every worker has, regardless of which industry they are part of.”