A photo of the train platform at the Cootamundra railway station. The train tracks are in the far left of the picture with bench seats and the platform roof in the centre.

The NSW Nationals in Government’s unprecedented investment in the 2020/21 Budget will see a boost for the Cootamundra electorate with safer roads, more efficient freight networks, better connections and local jobs.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said the Government’s record $33 billion transport budget will drive projects that will serve our communities for years to come. 

“Transport and roads infrastructure is so important for our communities, and I am pleased there will be such a substantial investment both in the Cootamundra electorate and in the surrounding regions,” Ms Cooke said.

“These projects will help our food and fibre get to markets quicker, create jobs in our communities and make travel safer for everyone.”

In this year’s NSW Budget nearly every major highway is seeing investment that will deliver safer journeys, improved productivity and boost jobs.

This includes $72 million for overtaking lanes as part of the Newell Highway safety and traffic efficiency improvements program, a joint NSW and Commonwealth Government funding effort.

In the Cootamundra electorate, five new overtaking lanes will be built on the Newell Highway – two at Marsden north of West Wyalong, two at Alleena and one at Mirrool, both south of West Wyalong.

A further $7.1 million is being invested for planning and construction of Newell Highway Flood mitigation.

“The Cootamundra electorate is also set to benefit from a share in accelerated funding for Fixing Local Roads with a total of $312 million to repair, maintain and seal the roads our communities use every day across NSW,” Ms Cooke said

This year’s Budget also accelerates $108 million towards the Fixing Country Bridges program to replace old timber bridges.

“Fixing Country Bridges continues to be one of the hallmarks of the NSW Nationals in Government,” Ms Cooke said.

“These investments and projects will not only make journeys safer, faster and more reliable – they will also create and support thousands of jobs, each one a boost to our small communities.”

Ms Cooke said along with the investment in regional roads the NSW Government is improving public transport right across regional NSW, with accessibility and safety upgrades at Cootamundra and Junee stations soon under way under the Transport Access Program.

These upgrades will make it easier for all customers, including people with a disability, to access public transport services at these stations.

“The upgrades at Junee and Cootamundra will not only make a real difference to everyone using the stations once completed, but will also create around 50 local jobs across engineering, design, construction and administration during construction.”

Other key highlights for the Riverina and the Central West in the 2020-21 NSW Budget include:

  • $24 million ($78.6 million over four years) for continuing Barton Highway improvements including the Australia Government funded Barton Highway duplication;
  • $15.3 million in 2020-21 to continue planning for the Great Western Highway upgrade between Katoomba and Lithgow; and

$23.5 million in 2020-21 to continue construction of the Great Western Highway upgrade between Kelso and Raglan.