Member for Barker Tony Pasin MP is calling for the Federal Labor Government to continue with Round 6 of the Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF), reiterating the importance of the grant program for projects like the Mount Gambier saleyards.
Meeting with District Council of Grant CEO Darryl Whicker, Saleyards Manager David Wallis and Agent Sam O’Connor, Mr Pasin said he was disappointed that Minister Catherine King hadn’t clarified the future of Round 6.
“Projects like the Mount Gambier Saleyards are vitally important to the region. The benefits that the planned upgrades would bring to the local livestock industry and the local economy are immense,” Mr Pasin said.
“The State Government seems to understand the importance because both the Labor and Liberal Party’s committed to project prior to the State election. Unfortunately, Clare Scriven hasn’t been able to convince her federal colleagues of the same and the whole project is now in jeopardy,” Mr Pasin said.
“There is currently no other Federal grant program that fits the bill. The Building Better Regions Fund has delivered projects such as the Mount Gambier Airport redevelopment that quite simply wouldn’t have happened without BBRF funding because there is simply no other funding opportunity like it for the Regions,” Mr Pasin said.
“Infrastructure Minister Catherine King’s silence on this matter is deafening. With applications submitted in February and outcomes expected back in August, the fact that the Minister is yet to clarify if Round 6 is proceeding as planned is a very bad sign for projects like the Mount Gambier saleyards.”
“The Minister was invited to learn more about this project and how important the fund was to its success, the fact that she hasn’t even responded to a meeting request is really disappointing.”
Mr Pasin said he was hoping South Australian Minister Clare Scriven was working hard behind the scenes for the Mount Gambier community by advocating for the funding round to proceed.
“With no interest in the project being shown by the Federal Labor Minister all eyes are on Minister Scriven to deliver the project. This is a real test for Minister Scriven. I hope she’s up to it,” Mr Pasin said.
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