McCormack delivers Stronger Regions funding

EXTENSIONS to Parkes Regional Airport, Forbes saleyards and Wagga Wagga’s Kurrajong Waratah are among vital projects across the Riverina and Central West to share in more than $4.2 million in Federal funding unveiled today by Riverina Nationals’ MP Michael McCormack.

In Parkes alongside Regional Development Minister and Deputy Nationals’ Leader Senator Fiona Nash, Mr McCormack said the three projects would deliver a vital economic boost to the region, as well as enhance future job and investment opportunities throughout the Riverina and Central West.

“The Riverina and Central West is the nation’s vital food bowl and freight hub, which Australia relies upon for agricultural product, skills and infrastructure to keep fresh food on our tables and product moving from the paddock or pallet to our ports,” Mr McCormack said.

“The $1 billion National Stronger Regions Fund (NSRF) – which was an election commitment of The Nationals in 2013 and 2016 – is a vital part of the Government’s commitment to support the regions to ensure there are opportunities and investment to train and retain local skills, increase services and build stronger communities in rural and regional Australia.”

Mr McCormack said three projects across the region total more than $4.27 million in Federal funding.

“As Australia’s Small Business Minister, I know the investment into Parkes and Forbes is critical in giving the region’s small businesses – a third of which are farmers – the infrastructure and services they need to continue to grow into the future,” Mr McCormack said.

“Our more than $1.5 million investment to extend the Parkes Regional Airport builds upon capacity at the critical freight hub of Parkes, which will be the intersection of the Melbourne to Brisbane and Sydney to Perth rail lines. This investment will improve the movement of freight and stock across the country by making it simpler and more efficient,” Mr McCormack said.

“In addition, the more than $1.51 million injection into Forbes’ saleyards will prove a vital economic boost for the whole region, encourage further local business expansion and increase opportunities for local producers to buy and sell locally, and generate more activity for small businesses.”

Mr McCormack said the NSRF also invests in much-needed community facilities, such as the $1.2 million investment into Wagga Wagga’s Kurrajong Waratah.

“Kurrajong does a fantastic job in providing employment opportunities and services for people with a disability right across the region. The plans to construct the ‘Hillsaid Farm’ will further enhance skill development and give people with a disability more local employment opportunities, while providing important lifestyle activities in Wagga Wagga,” Mr McCormack said.

“Each of these three projects will provide an important boost to make our region more vibrant and will provide more local job and investment opportunities.

“I am delighted to have delivered more than $4.27 million in Federal funding and know this will help our region remain a vital food bowl and freight hub well into the future.”

Further detail on the projects is as follows:

Cristy Houghton