The NSW Nationals in the federal government have delivered the first payment toward crucial small-scale local road and community infrastructure projects nationwide under a $500 million local government support initiative.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said local councils are well-positioned to get projects underway quickly as part of national efforts to boost jobs and support communities.
“This week we have got money out the door to the first of more than 40 projects to begin under our $500 million Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program,” Mr McCormack said.
“Uptake has been very strong, with more than 175 councils nominating nearly a thousand projects between them.
“A diverse range of projects have been nominated so far, which will support a broad range of jobs in local communities.
“Projects being supported include the sealing of more than five kilometres of Glen Davis Road by Lithgow Council in New South Wales.
“Having only announced the program in late May, we are moving decisively to deliver the support councils and communities need to get through this pandemic and get back on their feet.”
NSW Nationals Minister for Local Government Mark Coulton reminded councils to submit work schedules to the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications.
“I call on all local councils to get the ball rolling on seeking support for their priority road and local community funding initiatives,” Mr Coulton said.
“These projects will play an important role in improving local infrastructure, creating local jobs and supporting the nation’s post-COVID recovery.
“Beyond investing in critical local roads, this initial funding will deliver footpaths, sporting field lighting upgrades, tennis court sealing, improving green spaces, carparks, Wi-Fi networks and more.
“We expect councils to, where possible, use local businesses and workforces to deliver projects, ensuring stimulus flows directly to local communities.
“Local governments across the country are the perfect partners to deliver this economic stimulus as they work directly with their communities to deliver outcomes for their communities.”
The LRCI programme is part of a suite of investments being made by the NSW Nationals in the federal government and is in addition to the $1.3 billion in untied funding from 2020–21 Financial Assistance Grant Program, which was pre-paid in June.
For more information on the LRCI Program and the $1.8 billion local government COVID-19 support package, visit https://investment.infrastructure.gov.au/infrastructure_investment/local-roads-community-infrastructure-program/.