Murray River residents are a step closer to benefiting from road network upgrades after council resolved to sign the Nimmie-Caira funding deed agreement with NSW Department of Industry, Skills and Regional Development.
Council administrator David Shaw announced that the NSW Government would provide about $5.1 million to Murray River Council to upgrade roads and restore bridges in the Nimmie-Caira project area.
‘‘The funding will provide and maintain essential access to the Nimmie-Caira project area for future land management activities, as well as allow for the best possible delivery of environmental water to the western creeks,’’ he said.
‘‘By providing this money, the burden to maintain road and bridge infrastructure within the Nimmie-Caira area will be significantly reduced for Murray River ratepayers.
‘‘Under this agreement, council will re-sheet 36 kilometres of gravel road and re-seal 23 kilometres of Waugorah Road.
‘‘The funding will also see Pee Vee, Dead Mans and Waugorah Creek timber bridges replaced.’’
Mr Shaw congratulated the NSW and Commonwealth governments for recognising the need for local community offset funding within the broader Nimmie-Caira project.
‘‘Sometime these types of projects failed to acknowledge community impacts.
‘‘The Nimmie-Caira project is an opportunity for state, Commonwealth and local governments to demonstrate our commitment to work together for the betterment of the communities we serve.
‘‘The Nimmie-Caira project will result in better environmental outcomes that have local, national and international significance, with less overall impacts on irrigation communities.
‘‘This funding will help ease the financial strain on council and ratepayers to ensure the necessary road and water delivery infrastructure, critical to the success of the Nimmie-Caira project, is in place.’’
The Nimmie-Caira project involves the strategic purchase of 84,417 hectares of land, water and infrastructure across 11 contiguous properties in the Murrumbidgee Valley, between Hay and Balranald.
The project provides an opportunity to protect and restore the extensive wetland and floodway ecosystems of the Lower Murrumbidgee floodplain that are of local, national and potentially international importance.
The NSW Government will own the land until long term land management arrangements are agreed that will protect and maintain the environmental and indigenous cultural assets of the Nimmie-Caira and integrate where possible with long term objectives for environmental watering in Yanga National Park.
The project involves infrastructure works, reconfiguration of an extensive water delivery system and protection of important environmental assets, as well as funding for Indigenous and local community project components.