A new industrial estate to be built at Coolamon will provide a welcome boost to the local economy as the drought increases its grip, Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke announced today.

Ms Cooke was joined by Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Deputy Premier John Barilaro, Treasurer Dominic Perrottet and Agriculture Minister Adam Marshall at Coolamon today to announce the NSW Government’s $1.97 million cash injection, which is part of a larger $170 million package.

Ms Cooke showed the Premier, Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Agriculture Minister the site, which will be transformed by the $2.9 million project, and explained how the NSW Government’s contribution will help sustain the Coolamon economy as the drought conditions worsen.

“The $170 million Drought Stimulus Package is absolutely fantastic and right here in Coolamon it means that where we are standing we will see built a $2.9 million industrial estate, with a contribution from the NSW Government of $1.97 million,” Ms Cooke said.

“This will bring around 25 jobs to this site during the construction phase and just under 60 full-time jobs to this community when it is completed.

“To a community the size of Coolamon, 60 jobs is like 600 in a larger centre like Wagga Wagga or 6000 in a suburb of Sydney, which is absolutely wonderful news.

“I commend Coolamon Shire Council for their hard work, their application to this fund was absolutely outstanding and it’s always wonderful to be able to work with our local governments.”

Mayor of Coolamon John Seymour at the announcement

Mr Barilaro said the NSW Government was continuing to stand shoulder to shoulder with farmers and their communities battling the drought.

“The lack of rain on farm is having a devastating flow-on effect in regional businesses,” Mr Barilaro said.

“Every dollar spent by farmers at their local store helps keep someone employed in that business and a family in town. We recognise that in order to keep businesses open and jobs in town, the Government needs to fast track our investment in local infrastructure.”

Ms Cooke said these off-farm measures help mitigate against the ripple effect, the long-term impact that stressful situations like drought can have on our communities.

“I understand that it’s not just the farmers who are struggling – this drought is hurting our local businesses and communities – and as your local MP, I am determined to make sure nobody gets left behind,” Ms Cooke said.

“It’s also why we are also investing $8 million in funding to improve access to and delivery of mental health services in our community because we know the effects of the drought can extend much further than infrastructure or a dollar figure.”

For more detail on available drought support measures, visit www.droughthub.nsw.gov.au