Hillas Creek Bridge at Mundarlo Upgrade

The NSW Government has today announced the Hillas Creek timber bridge at Mundarlo will receive funding through Round Two of the $500 million Fixing Country Bridges program.

Member for Cootamundra, Steph Cooke said it is fantastic that the NSW Government is investing in stronger and longer lasting infrastructure in regional NSW.

“This funding will allow for Cootamundra Gundagai Regional Council to upgrade Hillas Creek Bridge from a timber bridge to concrete bridge.”

“Safer and stronger bridges will help keep motorists moving around the region for generations to come.

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Sam Farraway said $49.25 million has been awarded to replace 34 timber bridges with concrete bridges across 21 Local Government Areas (LGA).

“Our government is getting on with the job of building infrastructure to better withstand extreme weather events and protect our supply chain,” Mr Farraway said.

“That’s why we’re pushing ahead with Round 2A of the Fixing Country Bridges program in LGAs where councils are ready to get work, so these projects can get started.

A total of $290 million has already been awarded to councils under Round 1 of Fixing Country Bridges to replace more than 400 timber structures across 54 LGAs across the state.

Grenfell Sewerage Treatment Plant Officially Opened

A new $12.3 million sewerage treatment facility has been officially opened in Grenfell, thanks to the NSW Government’s Restart NSW Fund.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said it is fantastic to celebrate the completion of this crucial project for the Grenfell community.

“A reliable sewerage treatment facility is absolutely vital to support the township of Grenfell, so I am very pleased to see this project delivered in full,” Ms Cooke said.

“This modern facility will ensure the town’s requirements will be met for generations to come, with the works undertaken at the site a credit to all involved.”

Weddin Shire General Manager Ms Noreen Vu said the new facility will employ modern technology capable of processing 1500 kilolitres of effluent per day.

“Council acknowledges the professionalism of contractor Haslin Constructions throughout this project and we thank them for their ongoing support following completion,” Ms Vu said.

“The facility is the largest financial investment in Weddin Shire that Council has been involved in, delivering a project within budget and project milestones.”

Project Manager Mr Darren Taylor of Haslin Constructions said they are proud to have constructed a world class sewage treatment plant for Grenfell.

“We definitely went the extra mile to deliver a quality product, well beyond what the technical specifications required,” Mr Taylor said.

“In doing so, we utilised local labour across all disciplines which is fantastic.”

“The support from Steph Cooke Member for Cootamundra, Weddin Shire and the local community has been exceptional,” Mr Taylor added.

The completion of the Grenfell sewerage treatment facility is one of several water and sewerage infrastructure projects being delivered in the Cootamundra electorate, with the NSW Government building a safer, stronger regional NSW.

For more information about the NSW Government’s water and sewerage infrastructure programs, please go to: Water and sewerage infrastructure programs – Water in New South Wales (nsw.gov.au)

Regional Jobs the Focus as Work Starts on New Overtaking Lane at Mirrool

Jobs available in regional NSW continue to grow thanks to the $75 million Newell Highway project and the Newell Highway Program Alliance.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said that to date, the Alliance has completed 23 new overtaking lanes with seven more in construction and 10 in planning.

“Work started on Tuesday March 29 on a southbound overtaking lane at Mirrool, about 15 kilometres north of Ardlethan, to provide another opportunity to pass slow-moving and heavy vehicles on the Newell,” Ms Cooke said.

“The project will support around 120 jobs, including 60 locals, and is expected to take seven months to complete, weather permitting.”

“Local shires in the Cootamundra electorate including Bland, Weddin, Narrandera and Coolamon have all benefitted in many different ways including employment, through the Newell Highway upgrade.”

Former Dubbo High School student Hailee Strawns had never considered a career in project management until the NSW Infrastructure Traineeship Program opened her eyes to a new world of opportunity.

Hailee, who completed Year 12 in 2019, came across the traineeship program while studying a Diploma of Business at the University of NSW.

She began her traineeship with Transport for NSW in Dubbo and has now started an eight-month rotation with the Newell Highway Program Alliance, a partnership delivering approximately 40 new overtaking lanes along the full length of the Newell Highway.

“I thought the traineeship was an amazing opportunity for school leavers, especially for regional people,” Hailee said.

“Once I started the traineeship with Transport for NSW, I realised project management was a lot like business – it had many similarities and I loved that.”

Work will be carried out on a two-week roster, weather permitting:

Week 1: 7am to 6pm from Tuesday to Friday, 8am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Week 2: 7am to 6pm from Monday to Thursday, no work from Friday to Monday.

For the safety of motorists and workers, changed traffic conditions will be in place including reduced speed limits of 40 km/h and 60 km/h during work hours and 80 km/h after hours.

Motorists are advised to drive to the conditions and follow the directions of all signs and traffic control.

The Australian and NSW governments are jointly funding a $1.455 billion upgrade of the Newell Highway, with the Australian Government contributing $60 million to build new overtaking lanes and the NSW Government contributing $168 million.

More information on the Newell Highway overtaking lanes is available on the Transport for NSW website.

More information about the NSW Infrastructure Traineeship program is available on the NSW Government website.

Transport Infrastructure Boost Announced in 2022-23 Federal Budget

The Liberal-National Coalition handed down their 2022-23 Federal Budget this week which included a record investment in transport infrastructure.

The rolling 10 year infrastructure investment pipeline will increase to a record breaking amount from $110 billion to $120 billion to better our road and rail networks.

A number of new and existing projects will benefit from the substantial boost, most notably for the Cootamundra electorate was the announcement of $16 million for the planning of the Sheahan Bridge upgrade which is located in the Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council area.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke welcomed the strong financial commitment by the Federal Government to upgrading transport infrastructure including the Sheahan Bridge along the Hume Highway.

“The Sheahan Bridge is a vital section of Hume Highway that provides a safe connection for motorists and freight operators over the Murrumbidgee River floodplain between North and South Gundagai,” Ms Cooke said.

“The original bridge was built way in 1977 with the $78 million duplication funded by the Federal Government completed in mid 2009 as part of the Hume Highway dual lane project.”

“Considering the age of the structures and the immense increase in traffic we have seen along the route in recent years, particularly freight, I have no doubt that the section is due for an upgrade in order to keep up with the ever growing demand.”

This commitment towards funding for transport infrastructure is being further echoed by the NSW Government through the continuing benefits from the $400 million Fixing Country Rail, $500 million Fixing Country Bridges and the $543 Fixing Local Roads programs.

“Just under the Fixing Local Roads program alone across three rounds, the NSW Government has funded over $44 million worth of projects in the Cootamundra electorate,” Ms Cooke added.

“It’s not just the major transport routes that are seeing improvements, our back roads and laneways that are well travelled by local residents are receiving upgrades as well.”

This is the ninth Federal Budget handed down by the Coalition Government with Treasurer Josh Frydenberg to deliver the full 2022-23 Budget tonight.