HORSHAM Rural City Council has joined forces with other regional and rural municipalities to seek renewal of State Government funding programs for roads and community projects.
Council chief executive Peter Brown said it was important for councils to show a united front and demonstrate the valuable role that government funding had played in delivering more than 1500 projects to communities across rural and regional Victoria.
Since 2011, three State Government programs had delivered $360 million over four years for initiatives through the Country Roads and Bridges, $160 million; Local Government Infrastructure, $100 million; and Putting Locals First, $100 million, funding streams.
But Mr Brown said funding for the programs was due to finish next year.
“The funding streams have been significantly beneficial to our region and we expect to see a commitment in the next state budget for the programs to continue beyond 2014-15,” he said.
“The importance of Country Roads and Bridges funding is that it is largely for renewal works. This means that a number of upgrade projects which council needs to do, would otherwise not be funded.
“Particular focus in the first two years has been work around the Wimmera Intermodal Freight Terminal and improvements to Longerenong Road, involving both bridges and roadworks and completing the Dooen School Road widening project.
“Also, a number of other important urban road projects were undertaken.
“With a commitment from the government to renew these programs for a further four years, council will continue to enhance the municipality with better access to services, infrastructure and employment.
“This funding can only help to ease pressure on our rates and allow us to renew vital infrastructure in regional Victoria.”